For a few Saturdays now, we’ve been talking about God’s calling. Last week we talked about some of the different ways that God speaks to us. Today was going to be part 3 of that series, but I decided to take a break from that and talk about a related but different topic.
So far, we have been talking about how to listen for God. In this post, we’re going to talk about how we Listening to Him.
This is a huge topic and to be honest I wasn’t totally sure how to write about it. So I’m going to defer to the handy guys at the Bible Project. (Don’t let the animation through you off, their stuff is top notch)
I love the way that this video illustrates how, as Christians, we need to be actively listening for God and to him. In other words, we need to be aware of when and where he is speaking (listening for him). While at the same time we need to let him instruct us (listening to him). I have found, in my walk, that the times that I have grown the most as a disciple, are times when I’m actively looking to hear from God; with the intent of being instructed by him. While, on the other hand, the times that I grow the least are the times I’m not looking for instruction. You can see this happen in new disciples.
A lot of people, once they become Christians, quickly learn about one or two of the ways that they can hear from God (like the Bible or church). So they go to Bible studies, attend church service, listen to sermons and sometimes even read the Bible on a regular basis. During that time a lot of growth always happens. Why? Because that’s how discipleship works.
However, relatively quickly, because of life or something else, the pursuit starts to stop. Parts of their Christian walk are exchanged for religious habit. Consequently they continue to listen for God, but, the desire to listen to God disappears. They turn into a super fan. They love hearing what the coach has to say, but never assume that he is talking to them.
I think that the best way to prevent this from happening in our lives is to have the right intentions going in. Never go into the presence of God without the intention of listening to him. No matter if it’s a service, a Bible study, or your own devotional time. When God speaks, we will always miss out if we are not ready to listen.