Some time ago I was invited to speak about my personal journey of learning to listen for God. This is not a topic I consider myself an expert in, however, developing my personal walk and relationship with Him is something that I have become quite passionate about.
It is something that I have immersed myself in, finding challenge and growth inevitable in the process.
I began my presentation addressing some myths about listening. The verses I included are only a sampling of what God's Word says. I had to be selective as this subject could have taken days to discuss rather than the time that I was provided.
Myth 1. Hearing from God is not common today. It always happened in Bible times.
I Sam. 3:1 (NLT) "...Now in those days messages from the Lord were very rare, and visions were quite uncommon."
Myth 2. I have never heard from God.
If you are a believer you have already heard and responded.
I Peter 2:9b(NLT) “...For he called you out of the darkness into His wonderful light.”
Myth 3. We have no guarantees that God will reveal Himself.
Ps. 25:14 (AMP) "The secret [of the sweet, satisfying companionship] of the Lord have they who fear (revere and worship) Him, and He will show them His covenant and reveal to them its [deep, inner] meaning."
Prov. 3:32: (AMP) "For the perverse are an abomination [extremely disgusting and detestable] to the Lord; but His confidential communion and secret counsel are with the [uncompromisingly] righteous (those who are upright and in right standing with Him)."
Amos 4:13: (NIV) "He who forms the mountains, creates the wind, and reveals his thoughts to man, he who turns dawn to darkness, and treads the high places of the earth— the LORD God Almighty is his name."
Myth 4. There is no guarantee of what will happen when I do or do not listen.
Deut. 13:18 (NLT) "The Lord your God will be merciful only if you listen to his voice and keep all his commands that I am giving you today, doing what pleases him."
Prov. 8:34 (NIV) "Blessed is the man who listens to me, watching daily at my doors, waiting at my doorway."
Myth 5. Choosing to listen is really my personal choice.
Mark 9:7 (NIV) "...This is my Son, whom I love. Listen to him!"
Luke 9:35 (NIV) "...This is my Son, whom I have chosen; listen to him."
Deut. 13:4 (NLT) "Serve only the Lord your God and fear him alone. Obey his commands, listen to his voice, and cling to him. "
Prov. 3:5 (MSG) "Trust God from the bottom of your heart; don't try to figure out everything on your own. Listen for God's voice in everything you do, everywhere you go; he's the one who will keep you on track."
Myth 6. It is too difficult or beyond my abilities to listen and hear from God.
Deut. 30: 10-14, 20 (MSG) " But only if you listen obediently to God... Nothing halfhearted here; you must return to God, your God, totally, heart and soul, holding nothing back.
This commandment that I'm commanding you today isn't too much for you, it's not out of your reach. It's not on a high mountain—you don't have to get mountaineers to climb the peak and bring it down to your level and explain it before you can live it. And it's not across the ocean—you don't have to send sailors out to get it, bring it back, and then explain it before you can live it. No. The word is right here and now—as near as the tongue in your mouth, as near as the heart in your chest. Just do it!
And love God, your God, listening obediently to him, firmly embracing him..."
Myth 7. God doesn’t really care if I listen or not. It doesn’t really matter in the scheme of things.
Luke 8:21 (NIV) "He replied, "My mother and brothers are those who hear God's word and put it into practice."
John 8:47 (AMP) "Whoever is of God listens to God. [Those who belong to God hear the words of God.] This is the reason that you do not listen [to those words, to Me]: because you do not belong to God and are not of God or in harmony with Him."
Myth 8. Once I know the formula and the checklist for listening, I’ll be good to go.
God communicates in ways unique to us. There aren't any set formulas. However, we find and discover principles and guidelines to listening as we seek God and what He would have for us.
Can you relate to one of these myth's? What other myths can you think of?