Isaiah 50: 4

He awakens my ear to listen as a disciple, the Lord God has opened my ear.

When I began studying the Bible seriously, there was one thing that really amazed me. I was surprised how easily people heard God speak to them. I was unaware of God speaking to people today. I mean there were a few special ministers, I guess, that God spoke to, but not to regular people. That was not Biblical though and I had to face the truth. God didn’t lose His voice and people still hear Him today.

It is a good thing that God is still speaking. We need to hear His voice today. You too can begin to hear His voice clearly if you do not do so now. First, you must believe that He will speak to you. This verse ought to help in that regard. Ask God to open your ear then ask Him to speak to you. Next is the hardest part of all; find some quiet in your life. I don’t mean you have to just sit in a dark room for hours, though if that is what it takes for you to hear God it would be well worth it. In my own life I found that I had very little quiet in my world. There was almost always some kind of sound machine on in my world. If it wasn’t the television, then it was the radio or stereo. Sometimes I was listening to Christian teaching tapes, but even Christian teaching tapes and CD’s do not take the place of the voice of God.

I was amazed at how little time it took for God to begin speaking to me. In fact, I discovered that He had been talking all along, I was simply unable to hear. As soon as I set my heart to hearing God, there He was.

One word of caution, and this is something I did almost clinically in the beginning though automatically today. As you begin to hear a voice in your head, check it out against the Word of God. God will never contradict His word. If what you hear doesn’t line up with the Word of God, reject it. I also asked God to confirm His word to me. When I thought I had heard God speak to me, I would ask Him to confirm it by another witness and He always would. Usually, He would show me a scripture that agreed with the word I had heard. Sometimes he would use a minister to confirm it. Regardless, I didn’t move until I was certain that it was indeed God.

And that is all there is to it.

Also see: John 10: 27

Ears that Hear

Psalm 85: 8           NIV

I will listen to what God the LORD says.

Okay, fine, I will listen to what God says. What do you think of this statement? Is this something which you might write or say? Why? Why do you want to hear what the Lord says? What is your expectation? Why do you think the psalmist made this statement? The second part of the verse reads, “he promises peace to his people, his saints.” I like how the NASB phrases this part of the verse, “For He will speak peace to His people, to His godly ones.”

The writers of this psalm demonstrate confidence that they will hear God. I wonder how they receive the word from the Lord. Was it just a matter of being quiet and calm as we learn from Psalm 46: 10 or is there more going on here? Do they inquire of the Lord? What do you do when you want to hear from the Lord?

One method we all can use to hear the Lord is simply to read the Bible. Just by reading today’s verse you see for yourself that it is possible to hear what God says. That can be a mighty big revelation when it goes off in you? God’s voice can be heard in the pages of the Bible and this is a primary way you can hear God speak directly to you. You will see verses come alive right before your eyes.

Another way to hear God speak is through two-way journaling. This can be a valuable tool. I used it today so that I could sort out what was in my own head and what was actually from the Father.
You can also hear the Father speak to your own heart and mind. Sometimes I notice Him because I am involved in something different than what comes into my mind. If I am thinking about X and a thought comes in about Y, it is often because the Father is speaking to me.

He wants to speak to us all. In fact, He is speaking to us. The key is in the hearing. Many times the obstacles are too much noise or too constant a noise in our environment. In other words, we can go days and weeks with little quiet. At one time I had some kind of content playing all of the time. I would listen to preachers on TV while getting dressed in the morning. I listened to yet another in the car. I had constant stimulation at work, and then back into the car for praise music or a teaching CD. You get the point. Even though this was all good content, there was no space for Father to speak, no time when I could hear Him above the fray.

The best tool of all to hear the Father, if you really want to, is to just get still and quiet and ask Him. Talk with Him and let Him reply. You don’t need to talk much. He can carry a conversation. Frankly, He already knows what you are thinking so just give yourself the opportunity to hear Him and you will.

Gathering Faith

Romans 10: 17

So faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ.

There is a common question, “How do we get faith?” This verse answers that question. What about hearing? What is it that we need to hear so that our faith will be built? Secondly, how do we develop our hearing?

The verse says that hearing, or the ability to hear, comes by the word of Christ. There are two readings of this that are worthy of consideration and meditation. First, Jesus is the Word and the words he spoke while in the earth are recorded in the Bible. Both of those facts lead us to conclude that there is great value in reading God’s Word, the Bible. In reading the Bible and hearing speakers teach from it, our faith grows.

Second, we need to hear Jesus speaking to us personally. We need him speaking into our lives and about the specific circumstances of our life. How do we develop that skill? Look at today’s scripture from that perspective. Hearing, the ability to hear Jesus’ voice, comes by the word of Christ. Faith comes from hearing and hearing comes from the word of Christ. Therefore, our ability to hear is developed through time spent with the word of Christ.

Look at this same verse but from the Passion version, “Faith, then, is birthed in a heart that responds to God’s anointed utterance of the Anointed One.” That is inspirational. Christ means the anointed one. Faith that moves mountains comes from yielding to the utterances of Christ. It is more than mere reading. This translation shows us that what we should seek is an active engagement with the Word. Those who read the Word, take it to heart and then endeavor to apply all they see there, shall mount up with wings as eagles because their faith shall renew daily.

This is an important verse because it shows us how to have faith. And we know, “Whatever is not from faith is sin,” (Romans 14: 23). Moreover, we all have mountains in our lives and faith is required to move mountains so get some faith from the Word and from hearing Christ speak into your life, and start casting those mountains into the sea.

Opened Ears

Isaiah 50: 5                    Index Card 8

The Lord God has opened my ear.

There is no prayer I have prayed more than, “Lord, let me hear you.” I was desperate to hear the Lord. I listened to ministers talking about what God told them and it really annoyed me. I couldn’t hear God speaking. So, when I found this verse I held on to it like a drowning person would cling to a life ring. This is my promise. I knew that anything God would do for Isaiah, He had to do for Ivey because “God shows no partiality” (Galatians 2: 6).

I actually chased God 2500 miles one year because I was sick and tired of not hearing His voice. If anyone else was hearing Him speak then I was going to hear Him too. I declared to God that I was going to get Him and by God, I did, or more accurately He got me. I heard Him, I saw the Holy Spirit, I had a prophetic dream, I had words of wisdom and words of knowledge all over the place. Now if I struggle at all in hearing God’s voice, I know I can hold this verse up to our beloved and He will open my ear again.