How Does God Speak to Us Today? by Robert A. Avila
100 Ways God Speaks to You Book 1
How does God reveal Himself to us? How does He speak?
How does God teach us to hear Him? What techniques, tools and people does He use to draw us near and lead us into our life purposes? These short stories, in the life of one man, reveal how God breaks the chains of religious indoctrination, and sets us on the narrow path.
Perhaps God is speaking to you, and you fail to recognize it. God speaks in many ways. There are more than 100 ways God speaks to you. Compare your own path with the struggles and victories in the life of one Christian, as he experiences high school and the Marine Corps.
This book is for every Christian whose heart knows, “There is something more.” The #1 thing Christians want to know is, “How do you hear from God?” This book answers that question. Transform your faith. Hear from God.
Excerpt from How Does God Speak to Us Today? © Copyright 2023 Robert A. Avila
An older Marine sergeant approached me one day in the chow hall. He slid into an empty seat next to my roommate, on the opposite side of one of the white, square tables that filled the Navy chow hall.
“I saw your Commander’s Cup run,” he said, leaning over the table. “You interested in running the Fort Ord 7-Miler?”
“What’s that?” I asked.
“Each year, the Army puts on a run. The course is seven miles, hence the name. We’re putting together a team, and I’d like you to be on it.”
We discussed the details and I agreed. Later, he provided me the entry form. I completed it and paid the entry fee.
On race day, we carpooled together. The sergeant showed me how to register. Then, he showed the proper method to pin numbered racing bibs onto our T-shirts. It was my first run. I lined up in the middle, along with others on our 5-man team. A Fort Ord soldier gave a brief speech, counted down and fired a starting pistol. Those nearest the starting line dashed off. The mob of runners in mid-pack, which included our team, chugged forward.
The crowd jostled politely, then spread out as some runners faded back, and small groups assembled in the silence of huffing and puffing and steadily left the others to eat their dust. As time passed, my little group dissipated, and I found myself ahead of most of the runners, on a long, dry stretch of road. The back of the runner just ahead of me looked like he could be me. His height and weight matched. He even wore the same military haircut.
The scorching sun coaxed thick rivulets of sweat off the top of my head and onto my cheeks. Smells of dead, drying grass wafted off the roadside terrain. Heat mirage lines trailed up from the paved surface, far ahead.
The next runner preceded me by about ten paces. In front of him, another ten or twenty paces, another soldier strode his pace. Every similar interval after that, another runner held a position along the white line at the edge of the road. Runners spotted the road all the way to the wall of mirage vapors.
Those are faster runners, I thought. They’re ahead of me because they are stronger.
Then, I recalled something spoken inside the Catholic Church. Several times in my youth, I overheard men say, “All men are created equal.”
If we are equal, it means the runners ahead are overrunning, will cramp up, be forced to slow down and will embarrass themselves, I thought. But, wait … If that is true for them, it must be true for me. This means I am overrunning, compared to the person behind me. So, I held my position and did not pass anyone. A few passed me, going the wrong direction. They overran their fitness levels, and faded back in the pack, grimacing from cramps and fatigue.
Our team finished outside the awards cutoff.
In the following months, other teams formed, and more invitations came. I finished the races in respectable times. But, in each race, after the pack of runners thinned out in the second half of the course, the same mental dilemma prevented me from passing.
If we are all equal, I cannot pass. If I pass, I will over-run, fail, and look weak.
Then, one night, a dream revealed a different way of thinking. A runner paced himself on a long dry road, like the 7-Miler course. Competing runners held positions, spaced out along the road. The dream zoomed in, and I recognized myself, holding my position.
A voice explained, “Do not look at the man in front of you. Ignore him. Focus on the runner two men up.” The dream perspective swooped over the shoulder of the man ahead of me and focused on the man before him. “Work to gain on that man and ignore the man before you. When you pass one man, change your focus again so that you always pursue the man two positions ahead.”
I woke suddenly. The notion that someone spoke to me in a dream, surprised me. But, the mental tool the voice taught interested me more.
We ran a 5K the following weekend. I tried the psychological trick explained in the dream. The herd split into two packs, and I advanced with the lead group. When this group thinned, I forgot the runner in front of me, accelerated slightly, and worked toward the runner two places ahead. I passed a runner, but ignored him. The mental trick worked. I passed seven or eight runners in the last mile, and finished in personal-record time.
In future years, I ran many races, and took home many awards. After a time, the mental handicap expired, and I ran according to my fitness, training, and strategy. The dream initiated total freedom from a mental anchor.
Years later, the Holy Spirit revealed another application for this lesson.
“For by thee have I run through a troop and by my God have I leaped over a wall. As for God, His way is perfect. The word of God is tried; He is a buckler to all those who trust in Him.” Psalms 18:29-30
“If thou hast run with the footmen, and they have wearied thee, then how canst thou contend with horses? And if in the land of peace wherein thou trustedst, they wearied thee, then how wilt thou do in the swelling of Jordan?” Jeremiah 12:5
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