May 12, 2011 by Nicole
Well, folks, it’s a musical week here. Two days ago, some radio station that I happened upon by sheer chance thought it would be a good idea if they played “Achy Breaky Heart” and because that tune is so dang catchy, it hasn’t left my head. And, as you can see, the title of this post is an homage to BJ Thomas (or, my favorite version by Blue Swede–Ooga chaka ooga ooga ooga chaka….) because it is pretty relevant to what I have been thinking about.
Really, I have no larger point to this post that a question that has been on my mind from time to time lately.
Now, I am not one to take psychics very seriously. God does not show up in my bedroom at night and give me verbal instructions on what to do. There is a scene in the movie Baby Boom (starring Diane Keaton as a big time business woman whose life suddenly gets thrown out of whack when she inherits a child) that usually comes to my mind when this topic comes up; Diane Keaton’s character is interviewing potential nannies to look after her baby, and asks one of the women (who looks like a little like a nut anyway), “What brings you to New York?” to which the woman says “The Lord.” In case you’re curious, she did not get the job.
But, I do find myself wondering lately about those gut feelings that you get when you just “know” something. For some people, it’s when they meet their future spouse, for others, it’s when you know how to react in an emergency, or that something really wonderful is about to happen, or at other times, that some life business just isn’t finished yet.
The part that makes this hard to grapple with is that those hunches are usually very accurate. People talk about it as being wishful thinking; sometimes they believe there is a higher power at work. It is the thing that you can’t explain, but you clearly feel it, understand it for what it is, and intuitively, you just “know.”
“Knowing” I was supposed to marry my husband about a month after we met was like that–and since we’ve been married nearly ten years come June, I think my gut feeling was right. The difficult part for me as a devoted Christian is how to understand and interpret those moments in my relationship with God. I think at times that when you try to really listen to God or ask for guidance from the Holy Spirit, you do get that feeling in your gut.
And so, that brings me to my question: how it is that one discerns when it is indeed God at work? How you know for sure that you’re not just listening to yourself?