Hearing is something your body does without thought. Listening takes intentional effort and focus to process the meaning of what is being heard.
On any given day at any given moment you may receive a deluge of words and noises that your ears are forced to hear. Think about it. What does your day look like? Who are the people and voices in your life? Who’s loudest?
Everyday you hear, but do you listen?
Well, that likely depends on who is talking.
Right now, who is the most prominent voice you are listening to? Is it your roommate, parents, pastor, children, friend, Beyoncé, or yourself? The truth is, we speak to ourselves and we all have many voices trying to reach us and speak to us.
Whether you listen to the voice speaking or not often depends on who’s speaking and if you find what they have to say important. True?
If grandma said, “Your clothes look strange,” You would likely take it differently than had your best friend said the exact same thing. Or if the toddler next door yelled out, “you’re stupid,” versus if the one whom you love the most were to yell it.
I am a voice right now. I am writing to you in such a way that I hope you will listen and make it to the end of this post. That’s my goal.
So what do I have to say, anyway?
I want to say that among all the voices that you are hearing, you may not be listening to the most important voice. I want you to reprioritize your voices. I want you to place a different value on those speaking into your life.
If you’re anything like me you get tired of all of the listening. It wears you down. And if that’s true for you, please quiet your soul and LISTEN to this.
Listen to what God has to say.
“Come to me,
all who labor and are heavy laden,
and I will give you rest.
Take my yoke upon you,
and learn from me,
for I am gentle and lowly in heart,
and you will find rest for your souls.
For my yoke is easy,
and my burden is light.”
Daily, discipline your ears to listen to the voice of God. For God has spoken, and continues to speak through his perfect word. And what He has to say is absolutely precisely what you NEED to hear.
“All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right.” 2 Timothy 3:16 NLT
This last week we made our way through the book of Numbers. We learned how this book, filled with some pretty famous Sunday School type of stories, is also shot-through with the sad themes of unbelief and rebellion. It is shocking how a people who experienced so many displays of God’s faithfulness could still be ungrateful and unsatisfied with his provision and timing. Which ironically makes it so relevant for our study, for we all struggle with being satisfied with the circumstances of our lives.
It is the backdrop of Leviticus — with its thousands of priests and millions of sacrifices — that causes the beauty of the work of Jesus — the one priest, and the once for all sacrifice — to shine all the more brilliantly.
There are a number of major themes that weave their way through the whole story of the Bible: covenant, kingdom, and temple, just to name a few. This last Sunday we looked at the theme of God’s presence in each of the sections of the story that we have covered thus far (Genesis 1-11, Genesis 12-50, and Exodus 1-18), and then how this idea of God’s presence comes into a bit of a sharper focus in Exodus 19-40.
I think it is probably safe to say that there are two great peaks in the mountain range of God’s rescue and restoration of the earth. What the cross-resurrection event is to the New Testament, the exodus is to the Old Testament. In each case, the great redemptive salvation act (exodus/cross) produces the covenant community of God’s people (Israel/church) who are called to serve God and his universal mission.
Genesis 12-50: I Will Bless You
It is hard to look at any one text in the Bible and say that it is more important than any other text of the Bible. Since the whole Bible is inspired by the Holy Spirit as God’s Words, it is all equally valid and useful for growth in the grace and knowledge of our King, Jesus (cf. 2 Timothy 3:16; 2 Peter 3:18). At the same time, there are those passages that are particularly vital and important to knowing what God is up to in his rescue and restoration plan for the world.
The Whole Story: Genesis One Through Eleven
This last Sunday, January 7th, we kicked off our new sermon series, The Whole Story. As Genesis is the first book of the Bible, we began there, by covering chapters one through eleven...
Why Should I Read The Bible?
Most days I love waking up, coffeeing up, praying up, and then gobbling up the Bible. But not every day. I’m just like you in that. I need reminding about why the Bible — God’s Whole Story — is an important part of my day, for every other part of my day.