Do you ever find yourself yearning to hear from God? Do you pray and wonder why He isn’t answering your prayers? Do you ever wonder if He really hears you at all? Have you ever considered the reason you’re not hearing from God is because you’re doing all of the talking? That realization came to me during Bible study a couple of days ago. All I can say is “ouch”! I think my toes have been crushed.
Hearing from God. I think sometimes I underestimate the intense need I have to hear from my Heavenly Father. I need to know He is close by, and that He hears my cries. I need to hear His direction for me, and receive the advice only He can provide. So, why doesn’t that happen as much as I’d like? Quite simply, because I’m not prepared to hear from Him.
Ezekiel 3:10 (NLT) says, “Then he added, ‘Son of man, let all my words sink deep into your own heart first. Listen to them carefully for yourself.’ ” This verse contains very clear direction of how to prepare myself to hear from God. Y’all, I was missing the boat. “Let all my words sink deep into your own heart first.” The instruction is clear. I have to first prepare my heart to hear from God. I have to prepare myself to listen, and then do as the scripture says, “listen to them carefully”.
How do I begin to prepare my heart to hear from God? I’m already praying, and reading my Bible daily. I sing praise and worship songs at the top of my lungs while traveling in the car, I’m all about praising my Lord. How on earth can I not be prepared to hear from Him? Then it occurs to me. If you and I were having a conversation, and all I did was talk, read, and sing, would you ever have an opportunity to get a word in edge wise? No. My constant chatter and noise would keep you from talking to me. If you decided to speak over me, I’d still be missing key things you were saying, because I am not focused on our conversation.
Preparing my heart to hear from God means that I have to quiet my heart. I also have to quiet my mind. I think that’s the more difficult part. No running through the grocery list in my mind. No trying to formulate my own plan for a situation while I’m waiting for God to interrupt me and interject what He wants me to hear. I have to quiet myself. Stop talking, stop thinking…just stop! Then, wait. Wait quietly with the expectation of hearing from God. Watch for Him to reveal Himself to me. Listen for His calm voice as it penetrates my mind, Spirit, and Soul. Then, add the expectancy of feeling the Holy Spirit move to my preparation.
You see, hearing from God isn’t just about hearing words from Him. It’s about feeling the Holy Spirit moving. It’s about a connection with the Lord, a conversation…a relationship. Do you want to feel God moving in your life? Do you want to hear from Him? I know I most certainly do. It’s time for me to stop doing all of the talking, and start to prepare my heart and mind to hear from Him. It’s time for me to let His loving words of wisdom sink deeply into my heart. Then, and only then, can I truly say that I am hearing from God.