Today’s study wasn’t so much a study as it was an affirmation that Christ speaks to the Church and the churches directly. Blackaby gave several examples from his experiences as a pastor and speaker of times that Christ has spoken to a member of the Church at a church and the church listened to the message, followed up on it and God’s work was done.
There can be no question that he is right in his statements. My observations through the years have been that we rarely if ever encourage this type of speaking in our churches. Most of the time, we repress our members and our own thoughts because we do not want to be ridiculed for “speaking” for the Holy Spirit.
True, there are some churches where it is not only allowed but encouraged. They are, unfortunately few and far between. And of those that are, the majority are so focused upon “receiving” a Word that they neglect the whole of the Message.
So we have some work to do in this area. We must make it a point to honor Christ and ALL of His teachings. When He speaks to a member, we need to listen. We need to encourage each other to speak up after hearing from God. How do we do this without succumbing to the desire to glorify ourselves by “receiving” a Word?
Balance. Always balance. As a believer, we must balance three things in our spiritual life. We must pray. We must read and study the Word. And we must participate in some type of corporate worship, be it an in-home study or a praise and worship service at a mega-church. Only then will we be able to discern a word from God versus an inner desire or felt need.