By Colin Stott
MURRIETA, CA (ANS) — “Speak for your servant is listening?” (1 Sam 3:10 NIV)
We can talk to our Heavenly Father at any time, anywhere, about anything. Isn’t that great? But the best relationships are those where friends both talk and listen to each other. God wants that kind of relationship with His people. He wants us to be as ready to listen to Him as He is to listen to us.
As much as we might want to hear from God, our natural tendency is to be concerned with our own needs. Our prayers for them are usually all we make time for. Our busy lives don’t leave much room for listening which is an essential part of prayer. How can we know what God wants us to do if we don’t listen to what He has to say?
Perhaps another reason for not listening is because we might not want to hear what God has to say to us. There may be an area of our life we don’t want Him to disturb. If we listen too closely we might hear Him ask us to give up something or do something we are not quite ready or willing to do. It is easier to stay busy with our Bible reading and prayer lists (all good things) but without allowing any time for God to speak to us.
If we are serious about listening to God, it will help to cultivate a habit of meditating on God. Let Him speak to us from scripture. Ask questions. Make it personal. What is God saying to me through His Word? Give Him time to answer. Let Him impress His thoughts on our spirits. It helps to be in a quiet place, but we don’t have to be. God can speak to us in the storm. An ear used to listening can hear the Master’s voice anywhere.
Psalm 25:14 says God wants to confide in His people. How amazing is that? God reveals the deep things of His heart to those who will listen. If we don’t develop a habit of listening for the still, small voice of His Spirit, it will not just be our great loss, but we will grieve our Heavenly Father.
Photo one: 1) Listening to the voice of God. 2) Colin Stott.