Taking time to listen to the Spirit is an excellent way to gain more freedom. Two-way journaling is a great way to refine your listening. I learned this technique by watching Dr. Mark Virkler’s 4 Keys to Hearing God’s Voice DVDs. Click on the photo and it will take you to his site where you can sign up for three free videos, purchase the entire set, and/or other resources related to this.
If this is something new to you, it is his recommendation that you run your journalling by a few advisors who love you and whom you know to hear from God for themselves. And certainly to do so if you are making a major decision of any kind. I think that this is very wise advice. In the beginning, you are just wanting them to tell you if they think that what you’ve heard is indeed the voice of the Spirit.
Praying Medic is a friend who just came out with a book on this topic as well. I’ve not had a chance to read it yet, but if it’s anything like his other books, posts, and podcasts, it is well worth reading. It’s on my list for sure! He also has a book on Seeing in the Spirit which is more along the lines of what I’m about to tell you now. Click on the books and they will take you to Amazon where you can read or purchase.
Traveling or seeing in the Spirit is something that I enjoy doing and find very helpful. It is similar, but more visual, hence the name! I close my eyes and visit the secret place. This will be unique to each of us, but it is a place to go and meet with any or all members of the Trinity. Mine is typically a hidden meadow with a lake that I access by walking on a pathway through a forest. It is somewhat a mixture of childhood memories of Houghton Lake in Michigan and the mountains around Ruidoso in New Mexico. Sometimes, Jesus meets me on the shore of the lake where he seems to enjoy skipping stones. These generally appear to be gemstones, and he laughs at my surprise that he would throw large rubies, sapphires, and diamonds into the water.
Sometimes, he teaches me to pray from a place of peace and rest as we swing in hammocks and watch the clouds pass by. Other times, the whole Trinity shows up, and we sit around bonfire making s’mores. This is a painting of something that looks similar to my secret place. I painted it live during worship at the local house of prayer. It was a bit startling to find such a personal space appear on the board as I painted. (I talk about the process of this painting on my other blog here.)
As much as I am able, when seeing in the Spirit, I type out what I am experiencing in a journal document on my computer. I am able to type without looking at what I’m doing, so this works well for me. I find that I don’t remember the details of what I experience, so having a record I can go back to is very helpful. If you aren’t able to type while you are in the secret place, then you can make a voice memo and transcribe it later, or write down as much as you can as soon as you get back.
If I have a question on my heart or mind, I bring that with me, and then wait for his answer. I am finding that this is an invaluable tool, not just for freedom, but for pursuing my destiny. I’ll share with you a part of the description of one time I went to the secret place. I won’t put all of it here, because it wouldn’t be appropriate, but this will hopefully give you an idea of what I’m talking about (and, yes, I do go back and edit for clarity after I finish):
I see the sun sparkling on the ripples on the water that is caused by the wind. It is a sweet breeze. If I look up, I can see the distant shore of the lake. It doesn’t appear to be one that I’ve been to before. There are evergreen trees around most of the lake, maybe with patches of aspen here and there. The shore is very grassy, and the lake appears to get deep fairly quickly. There are other people, but they are very far away. I can hear the wind rustling through the pine trees. There is such a sweetness to the wind, that I am sure there is some mint growing somewhere nearby. I think we are somewhere in mountains, as I can see their peaks rising up beyond the trees. I think that most of them are behind us. I see clouds floating over the valley of the lake. Peaceful, white, fluffy clouds. I look at Jesus, and he is wearing jeans and a white shirt, and hiking shoes, maybe like keens. I see a backpack behind us, and I think that it is His for a minute. He twinkles His eyes at me, and I realize that He has no need for a backpack. It is mine, it looks battered and worn. I now remember how heavy it was to carry. I feel the lightness of the lack of it on my shoulders.
(We talk about the contents of the backpack, some of which related to people and situations for which I was interceding.)
Jesus stands beside me. He takes my hand, then puts his arm around me and hugs me tightly. I am aware that my backpack is no longer there. I look at Jesus and He cocks an eyebrow at me for feeling a bit sad about that. I take a deep breath, and laugh. Jesus laughs with me, and we can hear the echos of our laughter joining in all around us. We walk towards the lake, and there is a man in a boat that looked up when we laughed and is now coming towards us over the water. Jesus looks at me, kisses my forehead and sends me home.
“Leave your burdens here, dear one”, he says as the vision fades.
I think perhaps the biggest reason why it’s good to learn to hear the Spirit and visit the places that he shows you, is that you learn more about the character and love of God. Regardless of what images the word father conjures in your head, the Father is a very good one. Sometimes it is easiest for us to see that than to hear it.
Do you hear the Spirit and write down what you hear? Have you been to the secret place? Have you learned something there about God that you didn’t know previously? If you would like more information on this and the rest of the items on the Freedom Guide, I expanded this content into a book and workbook that you can purchase from me in the office, or on Amazon here.