I know I have mentioned this before, but I cannot seem to stop thinking about this lately. I really think that the Lord wants for us, as believers to really encourage one another in regard to how very crucial it is that we become better listeners. And I don’t mean sharpening up our hearing in regard to what the world has to say, either.
All it takes to get started is offering up our hearts to the Lord and stepping out in faith by telling Him how we are struggling to hear and asking Him for some help.
So then, faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. Romans 10:17
Fact is, we are going to continue to be hard of hearing when it comes to God if we aren’t immersed in His word. Period.
I have to admit, this was something I resisted until about a year and a half ago – being in the scriptures daily. I had been counseled so many times by very wise Christians that if we are not spending time in the word, that we will not be able to discern the inner voice of the Holy Spirit very well at all. Especially in this confusing and jumbled up world that we live in which is full of lots of mixed messages that come at us ever-so loudly, but not very clearly!
It’s helped me to realize that the world and all the stuff we “hear” in it, is far more confusing that the scriptures are.
I think the reason I was so hesitant, is that I apporached reading the scriptures as something I had to understand with my own human mind – in my own limited capacity. And of course, it yielded frustration, and an eventual “I give up” disposition. This is because relying upon our own strength is a recipe for guaranteed failure – after all, we need some divine help to understand something that was divinely inspired. We need some serious surrender to do so as well.
But once I really asked the Lord to help me with this, through prayer and supplication, (and yes, surrender) things started to change. I am hearing Him better now and I know it is a result of being in His word and remaining committed to prayer. Even when things are frustrating, stressful, and crazy, I still can hear Him. I still can get confused at times, but that just drives me even further into the scriptures and deeper into prayer. It’s where I hear best now. It’s the vantage point from where I was meant to be listening all along.
God wants this for us, friends!
What did I do that changed things a couple of years ago? I just started reading – even when I failed to understand very much. And then I prayed some more. Then, this wonderful thing happened……..
I wanted to read more.
And more, and more, and more.
I wanted to pray more.
And more, and more, and more.
And I started to hear Him.
More, and more, and more.
I don’t know if everyone has a different experience or not, but I can tell you what mine was. I wanted more of God’s word just by being in it – even when I didn’t feel like I was fully grasping it at the time.
That evolved into more of a sense of His presence – a time spent with Him, talking and yes, listening. Exchanging.
That’s called relationship. And that, in and of itself, made me want for more.
More of Him.
As time went on, and I read more, shared more, and listened more, the Lord started to reveal a lot of things to me. I actually started to literally feel like there was a two-way conversation going on. It changed from inner self talk to something very different. This very different-ness is something I can’t fully explain with my own words, but you will know it when it happens.
You will recognize Him and His voice.
But another really awesome thing was that at a certain point, this communication was no longerlimited to the time I was actually reading in the word anymore. Instead, the word carried with me throughout the day, into the next, and the following weeks and months. And the conversations continued to increase, until they just became a normal part (but no less an awesome part) of my entire life.
Faith was necessary to begin to be in the word – faith grew from being in the word – then hearing from Him further strengthened my faith, and it all started with reading and mediating on the word of God and spending time in prayer.
Just like the verse says.
If you are wishing that you could hear from God with more clarity, start by asking Him. You can truly just say a simple prayer similar to the one below….
“Father, I admit that I avoid the scriptures because I feel like I don’t understand them, I get bored or distracted, or I just don’t know where to start. Sometimes I even procrastinate because I feel like I can’t offer it more of my time, so I don’t even bother at all. I know it is your will for me to be in your word and in relationship with you, and this is something I truly need your help with. Will you help me, Father? Will you give me the desire to at least get started, and then grow it from there? Will you help me to have faith that you can help me to hear and understand what you so desire? And will you make it easier for me to discern the voice of the Holy Spirit you have placed inside of me? I want to do your will, Father, and I want to read your love letter to me over and over again. I don’t have to understand it all – I just ask that you would help me to hear and understand what you want for me to. I want to be in your presence, and I want to have a real and true relationship with you.”
If we just tell our Father the truth (that He already knows about us) in relation to this difficulty we have, and we come to Him with a heart that is “willing to be willing” – we will see Him show up in mighty ways! And we will hear Him. We won’t have to walk around blindly looking for a signal.
Then the willing to be willing turns into just plain willing. Then that evolves into want and desire. And that, turns into need and a new normal that is anything but the norm in this world.
All the other junk is still going to be there and we will still struggle with distractions and the noise of this world. But, in a really awesome way, that inner voice starts to tell us when that is occurring – and that’s when we go deeper. He’ll take us there.
Be encouraged, friend, if you struggle in this area, as the Father can hear you.
And He wants to make it easier for you to hear Him.
Won’t you bend His ear a little bit today in prayer? Just ask Him to help you start to listen and ask Him to help you discern His voice. He has a mighty range. Let’s take advantage of that.
May His voice be a sweet, sweet sound…in your ear!
**All unmarked images in this post used with permission from Microsoft Office Images.com
I love it!!! I find my self doing the same thing. Wanting to be in the word more and more. 🙂 thank you for sharing!
Yay! He is so good and I am glad you and I are privileged to be able to hear Him and spend time with Him. I love Jesus!
Jesus reveals more as we are maturing in Him. He is my right desire. Obedience is key, faith the engine, hope keeps my wheels turning.
Once again you have written gently and tenderly has you are led by our Holy Comforter. Father is delighted by the light that is in you.
In the Song of Solomon He is portrayed has been close by and loving the pursuit of His beloved. I will run after Him…
Ah, thank you dear friend. I think I will get into the Song of Solomon as you mention above in my devotions tonight. Love!
I do beleive in people of faith but the conflicts I read everywhere has me concerned. “I will not listen to the world”. God didn’t make it? You have chossen to ignore his world? That sounds like trouble comeing to me. If God did not make the world then who exactlly was th eall powerful to turn to that did? The only other option is you live in a world made by Satan. If that is the case, then you need to find your way out of it. Because to put down anothers world like this, a very combative path to walk on.
That to me is a direct conflict of anything Holy or something to follow. Day to day conflict bringing behavior is somethig I simply did not read in all my years in the baptist church or see allowed in any religion I have looked at.
“Run After Him” ? I believe the verse is “The lord takes care of those that take care of themselves.” I have read the bible as a child several times. If I pick it up here, send your masters. You can take any verse in the bible and alone and prove anything but to read it and soak the whole thing up, that takes reading the whole thing and understanding the whole bible not just what you want to hear. The context is not one of conflict and encouaring war, deprivatin, death, prejudice and judging.
If god made us in his image, he made ALL of us in his image. To prejudice another by faith whoa. Look out my God will have you for dinner. I was rasied Baptist now non denominal due to this constant lack of context in faith.
Hello there! Thank you for sharing your thoughts with me. I do really appreciate it. I definitely want to address your feelings, as I feel a bit badly – it sounds as though you may have felt I am being “combative” in what I posted here. (Or, it may be possible you are just wanting to share your thoughts about some other experiences you have had?). First, I want to make this one thing clear: Yes, God made this world and the people in it. He intended for us to live a perfect life without sin. I love the people of this world. However, in the Garden of Eden, the conflicting messages entered in – it all started with a hiss-like set of whispers. Those whispers, from the enemy? They are NOT of this world. They have tainted this world and filled it with sin. Does that mean that God now hates the people of this world or that we should not love them? Absolutely not. But, it certainly does mean that there are lots of things and messages sent our way that attempt to confuse us and distort what GOD has to say – which is always right, holy, and without sin. So if you sense a combative spirit in me, you are absolutely correct – I am combative against that which is attempting to steal our joy in Jesus. I will fight to the end to stand for what is right in God’s eyes, while loving others in the process. But I will also love with abundance and grace all the people of this world. We can stand for truth and love one another just as Jesus Christ Himself did when He walked this earth and still does now. But He has sent us a helper, the Holy Spirit, to help us discern truth from garbage. That is what this post is about. I have a heart for people, as I have been so confused by the partially true or not true messages sent to us in this world – I love people and don’t want them to feel alone in their confusion like I did. If you read the entire blog from the three months to now, you will see that in it’s full context as well. God did not create reality TV shows that tell us to “get what we deserve” no matter what the cost. God did not create self-help magazines that glorify man over truth and the Lord. God did not create motivational mantras, legalistic doctrine, political statements that elevate man to the level of Gods and taint truth. God created us, the mountains, the sky, the earth and heaven and gave us the inspired scriptures to guide us in light, love and truth. And no, the bible does not say that the lord takes care of those that take care of themselves. You may wish to check this out – I operated under that assumption for 40 years too, and it was another way that man-made distortions of the scripture had influenced me. http://www.gotquestions.org/God-help-themselves.html Yes, my God will have me over for dinner one day – an awesome feast – I hope to see you there as well, friend. I can’t wait to go home to dinner with him in the world He has created for us – the one that is spotless, beautiful, and eternal – the one in which we shall reign with Him forever – the one where we will live as He always intended. ALWAYS in context of HIM, and ALWAYS in context of His truth, His faith, His light, and His love. Please, if you wish to discuss this or anything else further at any time, feel free to give me your email. Otherwise, be well, and know that there are many people out there in the world who are turning their backs on the junk of this world that concerns us, just as it does concern you, and pressing in to love one another as Christ first loved us! Annie 🙂
Oh yes – one more thing….we all fall short of His mark of holy perfection. That’s exactly why we need Him. I am the first to admit it!
Thank you. Lets end this relationship right here. Prepare for hard core reality soon. I would suggest taking the movie Davinci Code a bit seriously now for prep. You are using a family name. That family is not going to let any use it’s name again.
Annie…I found your post heartfelt and encouraging. It’s amazing how I can read over a passage I’ve read before and get something totally different out of it. The Word is alive and contains layer upon layer of truth…and someday we’ll meet the author face to face…glory!
Isn’t that the greatest love? The one He has for us, and the gift He gives us through Jesus and the scriptures? On top of that, we get to meet him face to face one day, just as you said. God is so good. Sooooo good. Thank you dear friend. I am glad you were encouraged by this today. 🙂
Also, I hate that the world talks about “coincidence”…
Doesn’t God run the universe? And when we’re quick to brush off too many things as coincidence, we end up not giving Him the glory He deserves.
He’s ALWAYS talking to us 😀
For me, I spent about a month and a half, spending about 2 hours everyday reading the Bible and praying. And it resulted in me being better able to NOT quench the Spirit, to really hear Him better, to actually care about reading the Bible, to look forward to spending quiet time with Him.
I’m always praying, but I really think this tithe I did of 2 hours everyday helped my faith grow and helped my prayer life tremendously.
He speaks to us through Scripture 🙂
God is good 🙂
Aaah, yes. So wonderful, this time you spent in the word and continue to spend there. It is so revealing and never, ever ends – the truth there. I agree…the “coincidence” things of this world are fabrications as well….distortions of the truth, which is always far worse than outright lies. I am thankful for all of creation and the beauty that the Lord has provided to us, the fellowship amongst believers, and the opportunity to spread the love of Christ to everyone who will listen and embrace it. Hopefully, more and more will come to know Him. As you say, His goodness is not meant to be contained – He always wants to talk to us and speak to us. Thank you, friend. I needed this encouragement today. Bless you in His holy name! Annie 🙂