“For God does speak—now one way, now another— though man may not perceive it” (Job 33:14).
Within orthodox Christendom hearing God through Scripture and creation is commonly accepted, and considerable credence is also given to believing that God can and does speak in mystical ways through visions, dreams, intuitions and induced thoughts. That God speaks and reveals is inextricably intertwined with the nature and essence of God. “How” God speaks is His sovereign choice. God can communicate in any fashion at anytime, and it is neither the prerogative nor the obligation of mere mortals to define how God should make Himself known.
Furthermore, there is nothing done on the human side to “make” God talk to us. God initiates all God/human communication. God is neither a reluctant revealer, nor an unclear communicator. But, as with all communication where humans are involved, perfect clarity by the one speaking does not mean that the hearers always hear and understand clearly. God undoubtedly speaks absolutely clearly, but we do not always hear clearly. Because of human limitations we must always be humble in attitude when declaring how we have “heard” God.
This reality ought not frighten us away from seeking to hear the Lord, but we must consciously live in the reality of our limitations. Why do we not hear God clearly? Why do we sometimes seem not to hear God in any manner? A few weeks ago my mother-in-law awoke essentially deaf in one ear. Her hearing, which was relatively good on one day, was gone the next day. In reality her hearing loss did not happen overnight, but there was a climatic point in time when the wax that was slowly building up totally shut down her ability to hear. When the wax was removed, her hearing returned, it was like a miracle! What “wax” in your spiritual ears needs to be removed?
Father, there are so many things that block my spiritual ears so that I do not hear You clearly, if at all! You desire for me to be still and to know that You are God…yet, so many things limit my ability. Help me to sort through those things that I can do something about – the things that keep me distracted and busy. Then, please give me a humble heart and a willing spirit so that You can teach me how to hear You more clearly!
–Adapted from Giving Ourselves to Prayer: An Acts 6:4 Primer for Ministry (Chapter 32, How To Hear From God in Prayer by Calvin Blom). This book is available at prayershop.org. Use the code CONPSP3 at checkout to receive an additional 10% discount.
Praise Jesus as the suffering servant. Thank him for the love that brought him to the point where he “suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried” and even “descended to hell” for you. Confess any lack of appreciation for such love. Commit yourself to never misusing the name of such a loving Savior. Ask him to guide you in giving your life in thankful response.
Pray for the Christians whom God has called to be teachers throughout the week. Ask God to motivate them with the giving love of Jesus.
“Because God is the living God, he can hear; because he is a loving God, he will hear; because he is our covenant God, he has bound himself to hear.” —Charles H. Spurgeon
–Prayer Points taken from Patterns for Prayer by Alvin VanderGriend.