“How well do you listen?” Do I hear you say, “It depends?” Me too. Factors such as interest level, internal noise, external distractions, physical ability, etc. can impact how well we listen. But listening well, giving someone our undivided attention is one of the most precious gifts we can give. It is one of the ways we communicate to others that they are valued.
In our relationship with God, learning to listen well to Him also communicates the importance we ascribe to Him. It also has implications for the quality of our very lives. Hear His words in Isaiah 55:3, “Listen closely, and come even closer. My words will give life, for I will make a covenant with you that cannot be broken, a promise Of My enduring presence and support like I gave to David” (Isaiah 53:5, VOICE). In John 10:27 (AMP), Jesus said that His followers (referred to here as sheep) both hear and listen to His voice. He has given us this ability but we have to develop it. Please share in the comments what has helped you to grow in your ability to hear and listen to God.
This post is for Day 4 of the 31 Days of Five Minute Free Writes Writing Challenge. The theme of my series is, “Season,” based on the definition, “make (wood) suitable for use as timber by adjusting its moisture content to that of the environment in which it will be used.” Please click here to find the Table of Contents and links to other posts in the series.
As His child, I have the ability to hear God. But I recognize that hearing is not just about ability. I can hear without listening, that is, without giving my attention to what He is saying to me. Without giving heed to His commandments. Without obeying them. But to hear without listening, without obeying, is a dangerous place to be. For there are consequences for disobedience. There always are.
So I pray, “Abba Father, I want to have a listening heart. A posture of listening for Your voice, not occasionally, but constantly. Let Jesus’ words in John 10:27, be true of me, ‘My sheep respond as they hear My voice; for I know them intimately, and they follow Me.’ Let me hear Your voice, listen to you, and follow. To love You is to obey You. But obeying You is also an act of self-care, because Your way is always what is best for me.”
This post was written for Day 10 of the 31 Days of Loving Well series. The prompt is, “Listen.” To read other posts in the 31 Days of Loving Well series, please click here or on the image below.
Joining Kate Motaung and other members of the Five Minute Friday community for our weekly writing adventure. To learn about Five Minute Friday, please click here. This week’s prompt is “Listen.”
He kept popping up in out of the way and everyday places, at least that is what I recall. He being the character, the Test Man, who was in a famous commercial for a cell phone company. He asked one question, “Can you hear me now?”
“Can you hear me now?” I am thinking of the fact that one of the definitions of the word ‘Hear” is “to have the capacity of apprehending sound.” So, to hear seems to be about ability, in one respect. And I think of the fact that I can have the ability to hear but never learn to really listen. Because to really listen well is a learned skill. And in this day of multitasking and so much vying for our attention, it can be a challenge to give someone our undivided attention. And listening well requires our undivided attention. A turning to the one speaking, and focusing on what he or she is saying, maintaining eye contact when possible.
Listening well also requires an open heart and mind, a non-judgmental posture. It is an invaluable gift that we all can offer each other. Listening well is also a need that we have because we need to listen to our Father. Our lives depend on listening well, as HE speaks often in a small, still voice. And I need to draw near and hear Him above the noise of the world and listen well.