I was in food store. A thought flashed across my mind, “Buy celery.” I argued in my head. We don’t like celery.” The thought came again. “Buy celery.” I argued again. “When I buy celery, we throw most of it away.”
My young daughter came home with a note from her teacher. “Can you please send celery to school tomorrow?”
I learned a lesson that day. When an idea or thought just doesn’t make sense, it could be from God.
Be still and know that I am God (Psalm 46:10)
He spoke the word to them, as they were able to hear it (Mark 4:33).
She told the Lord she wanted to hear from her family.
Her brother heard a still small voice, “Call your sister.”
God uses people who listen.
Concentrate on a biblical scene, like the Crucifixion. Imagine seeing it, or being part of it from many different perspectives; stand with the crowd, help carry the cross, watch the nails being driven in, look up and try to see Jesus’ face.*
God still speaks through story.
*adapted from T. Davis Bunn, The Gift, p. 41.
“When she prayed, she talked. When stopped talking, she stopped praying. It had never occurred to her before that she should try listening in prayer.”*
Good conversation, with God or man, isn’t just talking.
Everyone should be quick to listen and slow to speak (James 1:19).
*T. Davis Bunn, The Gift, p.40.
He wakens me morning by morning, wakens my ear to listen as one being taught (Isaiah 50:4).
God helps us pray, day after day.
Sometimes God is loud. He thundered from heaven (Psalm 18:13).
Sometimes God is quiet. He gently whispered to Elijah (1 Kings 19:12).
Learn to listen when you pray.
O Lord, hear me as I pray;
pay attention to my groaning.
listen to my cry for help,
my King and my God,
for I pray to no one but you.
Listen to my voice in the morning, Lord.
(Psalm 5:1-3 NLT).
Jesus is the Good Shepherd. His sheep follow him because they know his voice (from John 10:4; 11).
Do you know God’s voice? E. Stanley Jones says, “The inner voice of God does not argue, does not try to convince you. It just speaks.”*
Do you listen?
Dallas Willard, In Search of Guidance, p.188.
The Lord is in his holy temple; let all the earth be silent before him. Listen to his voice, and cling to him (Habakkuk 2:20; Deuteronomy 13:4 NLT).
Silent and listen have the same letters. That’s interesting, isn’t it?