Listening to God (James 1:19)
James 1:19a, “Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear…”
Best friends since childhood, a wall-street investor and a farmer were walking through Central Park conversing. At one point the farmer said to his friend, “Did you hear that cricket?” The banker replied, “With all the noise in this park, how do you hear a cricket?” The farmer said, “You hear what you train yourself to hear.” To prove his point, he took a few coins from his pocket and threw them on the sidewalk. Everyone nearby immediately stopped and looked.
If we are going to walk with God in the midst of a society that is set on going in the other direction, we must hear His voice. There will always be other voices calling out to distract us from our course, but our ears should be open and eager to hear what God has to say. This is what James had in mind when he instructed us to “be swift to hear” (James 1:9).
Though the world speaks loudly, God often whispers. This was the experience Elijah had when he was alone on a mountain. He witnessed loud and powerful events: “And after the earthquake a fire; but the LORD was not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice” (I Kings 19:12).
Hearing that “still small voice” is vital to the renewal of our strength for the Christian walk day after day. But it does not happen unless we are willing to focus our hearing to discover what God has to say. Jesus spoke that those who know Him hear His voice. John 8:47a, “He that is of God heareth God's words...” John 10:4b, “…and the sheep follow him: for they know his voice.”
There are times when God speaks loudly, but most of the time He speaks in a still small voice. If we are wise, we will be listening intently when He does. To do so, we must plan some out some quality time with God each day, study His Word, and allow Him to guide us.
Questions to Consider:
Points to Ponder:
Prayer: Lord, every day of my life there are many things I hear. Some I’d rather not hear and others I need to hear. No one else gives me greater joy than to hear from You. When I open my eyes in the morning, I long to hear from You. When my head rests on the pillow at night, I desire to hear from You. When troubles, successes, sadness, and joy come my way, I yearn to hear from You. Whether I’m fearing, or at peace, my delight is to hear from You. In Jesus’ name, amen.
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Dr. Blackman is passionate about helping others grow in the grace of the Lord. His devotions are centered on how to grow closer to the Lord through a personal relationship with Christ.