I recently snapped this picture as I was trying to round up Vincent after school one day. He recently started pre-school, and it is sometimes the.hardest.thing. to get him to leave school at the end of the day.
He kept playing on this old phone but he wasn’t talking. He was just holding it up to his ear…listening. Of course I know that noise was not coming out of the other side of the phone, but Vincent held the phone intently to his ear as if he was hearing the most important instructions of his life (it was probably something like, here is exactly how to drive your mom crazy). He would occasionally knod or say, “yep.” But that was it.
I eventually got Vincent to leave school that day (not without the promise of fruit snacks once we got home, but that’s another story for another day).
It’s a cute story but that imaginary phone conversation got me thinking….what if we listened that intently to God each day? What if we could listen that intently to ANYONE each day? Am I listening to God or am I simply wanting to respond each time I pray??
Often times we are so ready to respond that we find ourselves not even listening. This is true in our friendships, our marriages, and even in our relationships with God.
When we pray and ask God for what we need (or want), are we giving Him time to respond? Are we sitting in silence and listening?
Sitting in silence is so hard in our society today. We are so accustomed to noise. I’m not against it…noise is okay, but when is the last time you comfortably sat in silence? Not on your phone, not with the television on mute, not with anything going on?
Every morning I challenge myself to sit with God for 20 minutes. Sometimes that 20 minutes seems like an eternity, sometimes I find that it’s not long enough. During that time I pray and thank God, but I also challenge myself to sit in silence and allow myself to listen.
When you pray, are you giving God time to respond?
Can you imagine yourself listening to God with intent to listen rather than with intent to respond?
I can’t sit here and tell you what God will say or what His voice will sound like. Only He can respond in the ways that He wishes. But I can tell you that He will speak to you in ways you never knew possible…if you simply listened.
The next time you sit with God, challenge yourself to sit still and listen. Don’t listen to respond, listen to hear and to understand.
This same concept holds value in your earthly relationships as well.
Just like all relationships, our relationship with God is intended to be a two-way street…an exchange of conversation and love. Allow God to speak and allow yourself to listen.