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How to Hear God
by Mark Nickles
2/25/2015 / Christian Living
Every Christian I know at least claims to desire to hear God. Undoubtedly, there is a need for us to hear from Him on a daily basis, perhaps more than ever before. Well, if you truly desire to hear God, take heart! According to the Bible, it's not the lucky, or particularly blessed who hear Him, it's anyone who takes a few specific steps.
1) Set your mind on Him in the morning. Psalm 5:3 says, In the morning, O LORD, you hear my voice; in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait in expectation. This, and many other scriptures throughout God's word tell us to seek Him in the morning. Why? I can think of a couple of reasons. First, and most simply, when your prayer and Bible reading take place before most people's alarm clock goes off, it's not likely that you will be disturbed. If we wait until later in the day, things often come up that compete with our time with Him. Additionally, starting your day in prayer and the Bible can affect your whole day for the better. How much easier it is to act, speak, interpret the day's events and even think like Jesus, when He is the first one with whom we've interacted, that day.
2) Enter worship with the proper attitude. We should enter worship (ANY worship experience) with the intention not to speak, but to listen. Ecclesiastes 5:1-2 says, Guard your steps when you go to the house of God. Go near to listen rather than to offer the sacrifice of fools, who do not know what they do wrong. Do not be quick with your mouth, do not be hasty in your heart to utter anything before God. God is in heaven and you are on earth, so let your words be few. Thank God for His plain-speaking word! It's hard to misinterpret this easily-discernable verse: When we go into worship, we should focus on what GOD wants to say to us, not what WE wish to say to Him.
3) Know His word. Am I saying that you should have the whole Bible memorized? Absolutely not. However, should we be committing scripture to memory on a VERY regular basis? Of course! Psalm 119:10-11 says, I seek you with all my heart; do not let me stray from your commands. I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you. As Christians, we need to be aware that the best way to live is by God's commands, which are only found in the Bible. To that end, we should KNOW those commands. Having scripture in our minds will help immensely in our daily walk being pleasing to our heavenly Father.
4) Plan to apply what you read/hear. What good is it to know God's word and hear what He is saying, if we don't take it to heart? In Luke 8, Jesus tells the parable of the sower. As he speaks of the different terrains onto which seeds fall, and then later explains the parable to his disciples, he says in verse 15, But the seed on good soil stands for those with a noble and good heart, who hear the word, retain it, and by persevering produce a crop. Pay close attention to what Jesus says, there: when the believer chooses to ignore the word of God, instead of living it out, it's a heart problem.
Is it your desire to hear God? If so, then, according to God's word, the above steps are absolutely necessary to that end. God wants to speak to you! He has things to say which are ONLY for you, and no one else! Will you do what needs to be done to hear Him? Will you commit to living out his wishes and plan for your life? If so, you are in for a blessed life, the likes of which you never imagined!
Mark Nickles is a husband, father of three, and a pastor in Northeastern Oklahoma. Copyright, Mark A. Nickles.
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