I know how to pray. At least I think I do. I pray to honor, thank, praise and ask God for what I think is needed. But how often do I pause and listen to His response? Another element to being His Follower is listening. L=Listen.
I confess sometimes instead of being an intimate time with God, prayer was another box to tick off my list. I prayed but wasn’t always willing to listen. Desiring to follow, I’ve tried to make prayer an ongoing conversation with God. Jesus understood and demonstrated this as He prayed to His Father in the Garden before His betrayal. He also taught us how to pray, so we too, could talk with God.
Prayer, like love as we discussed last week is not a one way street. God speaks to us as we speak to Him. He answers every prayer, whether it’s yes, no or wait. The question is: am I listening?
Careful listening is not one of my natural gifts. I realize the importance of it and do it when needed. But often I’m so eager to share my thoughts, opinions or emotions that I open my mouth instead of my ears. Rushing around with my head down and mouth open while crossing things off my list means I may miss God speaking.
But then then are those still small moments. The beautiful sunset after a cloudy day. A child’s giggle, the softly whispered thank you from a friend. I breathe deep as life takes my breath away. I not only open my ears, but my eyes, heart, mind and soul to hear Him. Suddenly, life is refocused on Him, not me.
God speaks in many different forms. First and foremost, God speaks through His Holy Word, the Bible. When we approach reading the Bible with a prayer for wisdom and insight, God will illuminate what we choose to investigate. I also believe God speaks in our circumstances, other people and the world around us.
Whether it’s a song or Bible verse at just the right moment, words from a trusted source or life dots which finally connect, these God whispers are nothing less than sacred.
My ongoing prayer is to hear Him throughout my day. If you haven’t ever done this, try! Listen to God through His Word and the world around you. Let your prayers be an ongoing dialogue with the One, true God.
I often hear Him speaking to me with a song at just the right time. I’ve been compiling a playlist for our Follower series this Lent. Some I mentioned in our last Bible Study post. Some are praise songs, others are about following. Here’s the list so far, see if any of them speaks to you! (All available wherever you get your music.)
Open your mind, heart and soul as you tune to the God whispers in your life. Hear Him and then heed the call on your life as His Follower.
- Our God by Chris Tomlin
- Here with Me by Mercy Me
- Follow Me There by Third Day
- I Will Follow by Chris Tomlin
- Revelation by Third Day
- Trust in You by Lauren Daigle
- Hold us Together by Matt Maher
- Breathe by Jonny Diaz
So we must listen very carefully to the truth we have heard, or we may drift away from it. ~Hebrews 2:1
22 But don’t just listen to God’s word. You must do what it says. Otherwise, you are only fooling yourselves. 25 But if you look carefully into the perfect law that sets you free, and if you do what it says and don’t forget what you heard, then God will bless you for doing it. ~James 1:22, 25