Asking God for Signs

Posted by James Hahn on

Mark 1:14-20

If you are like me, you have probably asked God for a sign at one time in your life. I can think of at least a dozen times when I have asked God for some sort of sign. I have asked for signs that would help me make a decision. I have asked for signs to show me what I was to do in life. I have asked for signs to help me win the lottery - hey, I'm a weak, sinful, selfish human person who is still loved by God!

God is patient when we ask for signs. Just read through the call of God to Gideon (Judges 6:11-40) and you will see how patient God is in our asking for signs. You will also see that God can and does give signs. If you are like me, you have occasionally received a clear sign from God. The signs that I have received were unexpected and far better than any silly thing I could have challenged God to do.

With all of this however, God more often speaks to us in our everyday life. He speaks to us in and through events and people. We receive His word and calling for us if we are faithful doing what our state in life demands.

Yes, an angel of the Lord appeared to Gideon but what was Gideon doing? He was working, threshing wheat. He was not in some lofty position of prayer or deep in a mystical meditation. He was doing the things required of him at that time in his life. God had a plan for Gideon and since God saw that Gideon was faithful in the menial tasks of his everyday life, God trusted that Gideon would be faithful in the task He was planning to give Him.

In today's Gospel we find the two sets of fisherman brothers doing what they do best. Peter, Andrew, James and John, are fulfilling their obligations and vocation. They are doing what suits their state in life when the Lord Himself comes and calls them. They were not burning incense. They were not daydreaming about the coming of the Messiah. They were faithfully doing the everyday things of this life when God called them to something else.

There are so many examples in Scripture where God calls people who are simply doing what they ought. God calls us too. He has plans for us too. Your job is to ask Him in prayer what that plan is and then go about your daily business while waiting for the answer. That answer may come sooner or later but He will answer and trust me, He knows where to find you!

FROM THE SAINTS - "Of Jesus' thirty-three years, thirty were spent in silence and obscurity, submission and work." - Saint Josemaria Escriva

How to get better at prayer.
  1. Set a prayer appointment - Set a time on your calendar each day to meet and speak with God.
  2. Slowly increase your prayer time. - Don't jump in with an hour right from the get-go.  Build up your "tolerance" so to speak.
  3. Commit - to praying and slowly increasing your prayer time for 30 days.  Mark off the days on your calendar.  If you miss a day, jump right back in, don't give up.
  4. Pray - praying is talking to God, it's spending time with your attention focused on Him.  I enjoy spending time with my children regardless of their level of development.  God is the same way.  Spend time praying as best you can.  Use formal prayers if you want or simply speak in conversation.  Don't forget to listen
  5. Journal - Our newly revised 4 Simple Steps to Better Scripture Meditations: Guide, Workbook, and Journal walks you through 4 easy steps that will help you go deeper in your prayer life.  It includes 31 days of workbook and journal pages too!
  6. Read other good books about how to pray better - Prayer PrimerDeep Conversion, Deep PrayerTime for GodThe Spiritual Life: A Comprehensive Guide to Catholics Seeking Salvation

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