Reflecting on this Peter leapt to mind. In 2 Peter 1:19 – 21, he recounts his experience at Christ’s transfiguration (Mark 9:2 – 8; Matthew 17:1 – 8; Luke 9:28 - 36). There Peter not only saw a vision, he also heard the voice of God commanding Peter to listen to Christ. That did not prevent Peter from boasting of his loyalty at the last supper, attacking the soldiers at Gethsemane, and then subsequently denying he even knew Christ three times. This was one who not only saw the vision and heard the voice but walked daily with the physically present Lord for around three years. Clearly, he was a slow learner… so am I.
The extraordinary experiences we crave to validate our faith are a bit like fireworks. They are overwhelmingly beautiful but quickly fade in the darkness of our trudge through the domain of the ruler of this world. It seems that the real fuel for this journey may not be the extraordinary but rather the continual practice of daily acknowledging Christ’s Lordship, meeting Him in prayerful consideration of His Word, and, as is says in Philippians 2:12, working out our salvation by being doers of His Word (James 1:22ff).