Meet Niki Hardy, author of the newly released book, Breathe Again. A wonderfully written book that encourages readers not just to survive the hard places but to thrive in them. You’ll get a sample of Niki’s writing and personality here and you’ll surely want to pick up Breathe Again for yourself and feel like you are learning to solve all life’s problems together over a cup of British cream tea. If a season of struggle has been in your past or present, this book is for you. Sit back and enjoy Niki’s encouragement in her own season of waiting.
How Do We Hear the Voice of God?
We needed an answer. We really needed an answer: yes or no. Should we or should we not move our family to Charlotte, NC, to plant a church?
Surely God would tell us? After all, he was the whole reason we were even thinking of going in the first place. So I prayed for a revelation.
I prayed and prayed for God to make it super abundantly clear. This was big and we needed to be one hundred percent sure.
How do we hear the voice of God?
I even prayed He’d send me a prophet to stop me in the supermarket checkout line and ask, “Does the name Charlotte mean anything to you?” Because then I’d know for sure. I wanted certainty. I needed certainty.
Uprooting our crew and heading across the pond was a massive deal and if it wasn’t God’s idea we didn’t want to go. Why would we? The church would flop and we’d be yanking our three kids from their friends and family for nothing. Perhaps he really wanted us to finish seminary and go back to London or maybe head to a small parish where the vicarage has roses around the door.
Who knew? If only He would tell us.
So we prayed and we listened but all we got was silence. No revelation in the check-out line. Zip. Nada. Crickets. Silence.
No out-of-town prophet, no writing in the sky, no God-incidences we couldn’t ignore. Silence.
Maybe you’re praying for an answer to a really big question too. A yes or no, a go or stay, a here or there question burning through you. It’s a hard place to be, isn’t it?
Our God is a relational God and we know his plans are better than ours so we want to follow his will. And yet it’s hard when we can’t hear what that will is. We desperately want to do the right thing but how on earth can we if we can’t hear what he’s saying?
We’re left directionless, frustrated and if you’re anything like me, a bit pissed off.
“Hello God, I’m trying to follow you here, the least you could do is give me a bit of direction.”
Eventually we got an answer from God about moving to America, but not in the way I expected.
Standing in the morning bustle of my daughter’s reception class, as she packed her book bag away and sat down at her table, with my mind wandering to nowhere in particular, I realized I had an answer.
No big fanfare or bolts of lightning. The answer was yes. I just knew that I knew. I heard God’s voice not as a revelation but as a realization, a knowing.
I turned to my friend, who was tying her son’s shoelace. “We’re going,” I said matter-of-factly.
Having prayed alongside me and listened to my deliberations long into the night, she knew immediately what I was talking about.
“Yes, yes you are,” She replied calmly. She just knew. God had confirmed things.
In the mindless daydreaming of the morning, my brain was free to hear. As JI Packer says, “God…guides our minds as we think things out in his presence.”
Since then I’ve been learning to turn off my logical, ever-churning left brain to free up my more creative, intuitive right brain to hear God’s still small voice.
I pray that the God who knows your heart, your dreams and your desires, gives you a deep realization of what His will is. I pray that you know, that you know, that you know. I pray that He writes it on your heart where it will not fade, so that when you enter stormy waters, it is there, anchoring you to His will.
Resting in Realization,
Niki Hardy is a Brit in the USA, a rectal (yes, rectal) cancer survivor, pastor’s wife, tea drinker and teller of bad jokes. As a speaker and the author of Breathe Again: How to Live Well When Life Falls Apart (Revell, Aug, 2019) she’s all about meeting you when life’s not fair and helping you embrace the reality that with God, life doesn’t have to be pain-free to be full, then go live it. You can find more of Niki on Instagram, and on her website NikiHardy.com When she’s not speaking, writing, or running trails with her Doodles, you can find her with a nice cup of tea, trying to figure out which remote control actually turns the TV on.