How Well Do You Listen?

listen

How much effort do you really put forth into listening to someone? Be honest. As technology advances, lives become cluttered, and noisy distractions are commonplace, it seems that society- as a whole- has become a group of great talkers and horrible listeners.

Let’s take this a bit further… how much effort do you really put forth into listening to GOD? Do you EVER put forth ANY effort? I’m not bringing this up to step on toes- Lord knows I truly am one of the worst at being quiet before Him in order to listen. It’s crucial, however, in our goal to be more like Christ, to actively listen for the voice of God. Is it even important enough to you to try to hear what God has to say to you about your own life – or are you just going your own way, perhaps even talking to God, but never really listening for His input?

For every believer, there will be times when it seems God is ignoring and perhaps even blocking us (which is not true- but everyone feels that way at some point). However, are your¬†attempts¬†at hearing Him about as good as a toddler’s attempt to stay focused and follow directions? I have a 2-year-old… I can go there. ¬†If we are truly growing in our faith- shouldn’t our efforts with communication be growing as well? God speaks in many different ways, but it seems 4 of the main methods are:

1. He speaks to our spirit
2. He speaks through His Word
3. He speaks through other people
4. He speaks through circumstances

{My Pastor made a great analogy regarding this…saying that Scripture is God’s spiritual cell phone. One of the main ways God talks to us is through His Word- yet how often do we really “pick up the phone” and try to hear what He has to say?}

If God faithfully speaks to us- which He not only promised He would do, but as a Christian I can personally vouch for the fact that HE DOES, why are we not doing a better job listening?

I think I can pretty much sum up any kind of answer to that question in the acronym ADD (Ironically, these are things that add too much to our already overflowing mental plate and thus directly inhibit our listening for the voice of God).

A:  Apathy
D: Distractions
D:  Doubt
(And for those wondering: yes- apathy can actually increase your stress level- especially if you’re trying to fight it while it hangs around)

We WILL continually fail and we WILL have too many things “ADDed” to our plate. It is in our human DNA to fall on our faces and royally screw things up. However, God doesn’t see a wreck when He looks at us who are saved through believing in Christ… He sees His Son. He knows what we are capable of becoming and wants desperately for us to listen for His voice and leading- knowing that it’s the only way we’ll ever reach that destination.

Is listening important? You bet your sweet bippy it is! For every one of us who are breathing- it’s a matter of life and death! We will fall short at times, but the journey is in the getting up and dusting off. The Spirit is always waiting for us to be in complete surrender to Him- straining our spiritual ears to hear His still, small voice. It’s a difficult chore to constantly do, but with such an amazing allowance. What better payment for an effort than to hear the voice of our King?

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