In preparation for my trip to Africa, I picked up a package of earplugs to help block out the noise on the 15-hour round trip plane ride. I used them but they didn’t completely cancel the snoring from the dude next to me. It did soften the baby’s cry from five rows back though. More importantly, it helped me focus on what I was reading.
The earplugs helped block out the noise around me so I could read intently.
One thing I battle on a daily basis is listening well. I can hear you talking but often miss the point of the conversation because in my mind I am preparing my defense. God is changing my way of thinking from an defensive position to an offensive position and that comes from listening well to His voice.
In my growing and seeking of this year, I have come to learn the art of listening and learning to listen well. It’s mind altering when you change positions on thinking in an godly offense position from my human nature line of defense. It also changes the way I think about what and how I am listening.
Have you often wondered if you are hearing voices? No, I’m not crazy but the world offers a million voices of distraction in so many areas of our lives. Those distractions only prepare us to be offensive and prideful with others instead of loving and kind with each other. Listening well is an act of love that speaks volumes to your spouse, your significant other, your family, your friends, your community, co-workers, etc.
As long as we are listening to what the world tells us on how to dress, how to work towards success, and be less that what we are created then we will never hear what God says about all of this. How do we block out the world’s offenses towards us and listen well to what God says to us? There are million ways but I will explain a few ways that have made a big difference in my life.
We have to still our hearts and wills in submission to God’s way of listening to hear His instructions on how to live this life in front of us. I have fallen prey to the hisses of the enemy far too long, and much too often. God is so good to speak to us in ways that we need, but we often miss His voice because we are looking for a big flashy neon burning bush.
God doesn’t have to talk to us but He chooses to speak to us through the Holy Spirit’s comforting words to us. Many times He uses the encouragement of our friends to help with saying what He wants us to hear. Sometimes He speaks through His creation. And certainly not the least way, He speaks through His words that have already been written, His Word that has inspired us for centuries.
What God has been teaching me in the listening is the obedience in what I hear Him saying. God will often tell us things that only make sense to us. But we shouldn’t let it stop us from speaking right things to others and obey the righteousness He wants to bring out in us.
We can never stop obeying and listening and learning. Once we understand the position of God in which God speaks to us, it is easy to do what He has asked us to do. We are not His children in trouble when He comes calling our name, but He is our loving Daddy that just wants to spend time with us. Did you know that God isn’t looking at your sin when you come to Him?
He already knows about that. No, He sees you as righteous.
He doesn’t keep a record of your wrongs. “What sin?”, God says. He’s forgotten about that one the first time you said you were sorry. You admitted you wanted to change, so why did you back to listening to the distraction that has you agreeing with the enemy?
We have selective hearing don’t we?
God is a God of His Word. His word is truth, and life, and love. So when He speaks it’s from His heart of love that He wants to teach you and show you great and mighty things.
Isn’t it time you let your ego out of the way and listen better? There’s no position to defend except the one of His mercy. God’s grace is the best offense we can wrap our ears around.
Grace doesn’t give cause to straying regularly but gives the reason to cancel distractions continually.
I don’t know why I am sharing all this except I know there is one person who needs to be reminded of how God listens to us. Our words to Him are met with His heart of love, and translated by His loving Spirit, so that He truly hears what our hearts are saying. When I think about how God listens to me, so intently and patiently, that changes the words I am saying to Him.
My words to God change the way I speak to others and the way I listen. I am listening long and well and for the heart between your words.
Watch out world, when a noble woman has something to say, truth speaks for itself. God’s truth is powerful, moving and when it is said with a heart of love, will be met by those who are listening intently for the love that is spoken.
As God is speaking words that I listen to, it hones my hearing to the movement of the Holy Spirit’s voice in my life. I’ll admit that I have missed His voice in my life, but the opportunities of obeying His voice now are increasing. In the fine tuning of my listening, His Voice is amplifying. As if it’s a supernatural hearing shouts over my sin tone deafness.
God’s tone of Love speaks softly and His message never misses a beat. What distracts you these days? What voices are you listening to? What nudging from the Holy Spirit do you need to hear better?