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Receiving The Gift: Prophecy In Everyday Life

Author: Maureen Goldsmith

Picture: Piqsels

Receiving The Gift: Prophecy In Everyday Life

Maureen Goldsmith offers timely tips on effectively hearing and acting on God's promptings in our everyday lives.

Have you ever heard something at a prayer group or a conference and thought: “I think that is for me?” Or perhaps someone has prayed with you and given you a word or a picture? Or maybe you’ve heard something at Mass which struck you more forcefully than normal?

These are all situations where God may have spoken to us through the charism of prophecy. In this way, the Lord intervenes in our lives by the action of the Holy Spirit for our “strengthening, encouragement and comfort” (1 Corinthians 14:3).

The question is: How can we now respond to what we think the Lord is saying to us in our everyday lives?  Unwittingly, we can welcome that prophetic word in the moment, and then somehow lose it in the distractions around us. How, then, can we work with God to treasure and receive more deeply the grace He wants us to have?

Acting on God's Grace

Imagine Christmas. Hopefully, we all receive some gifts. However, there can be so much going on that it might be Boxing Day before we have time to really appreciate them. It then becomes obvious how our gifts can be used and become a part of our daily lives.

We can feel thankful and closer to the giver for their thoughtfulness. It’s having the time to really look at them that makes the difference to how we receive them.

It’s the same when we receive a prophetic word or picture from the Lord. If we really believe God is speaking to us, we have to do  something to try to receive this as a gift.

Here are a few practical steps:

1.  Guard it against being lost. Take it seriously. Write down the word as soon as you can, within 5 minutes preferably-and describe any picture. Draw it if you can. Make a note of how you felt when you were given it.

2. Make an appointment with yourself to talk to the Lord about what happened. Ask the Holy Spirit to help you discern if this is from God and ask for His help in receiving His grace into your life. Reflect on it.

3 Test it. Is it in line with the Scriptures and with Church teaching? Has this word been given to you by a trusted person?  This is important.

4. Examine your own response. Do you feel strengthened, encouraged, comforted? Maybe challenged? God’s word always opens us up to receive more of His tender love. Are you led to praise and thanksgiving?

5. Use it. Try using it in your prayer time. Write it down and read It often. Memorise it, say it out loud and use it in prayer. Let it take deeper root in you and minister to you. You can do this with a verse of scripture or a specific word.

Prophecy as a source of grace and encouragement

These prophetic words can become a constant source of God’s grace and encouragement.

Some years ago, I was hurt by someone and finding it very difficult to deal with my feelings about it, especially how to forgive and pray.

On one occasion, leaving a prayer meeting, I was feeling blessed and calmed when a friend, who knew nothing about my situation, stopped me and said the Lord wanted to give me more. I was told: “When you pray, all you need to say is: ‘Jesus love them, Jesus love them, Jesus love them.’”

I was amazed, but it felt just right and I accepted this as the Lord intervening in a prophetic way. I started praying that prayer each day. It made a huge difference. It’s hard to stay angry when you are praying for love!

The Lord knew exactly what I needed: to trust Him and simply pray with the words He had given me. It was beautiful. My heart was lighter and my sense of God’s incredible care lifted to another level, as I experienced His compassionate care for both my hurt and those I prayed for.
 
Sometimes it helps to read more about the gifts of the Holy Spirit in our walk with God. “Towards a Fuller Life in the Holy Spirit” by Charles Whitehead is a very readable and practical book, available from GoodNews books.

  • Other helpful resources on prophecy include the books "Guided By God" by Fr Pat Collins, "Renew Your Wonders" by Damian Stayne-both available from GoodNews books- and this CCR article by Ros Powell.

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