So we talked about why it might be that we are hard of hearing when it comes to discerning the voice of God in our lives. There was the example of my son Jeremiah who has massive wax boulders in his ears so that when we speak to him, he can’t hear us, literally.
The reason we can’t hear is not because God is not speaking because I believe God is constantly speaking to us. And one word from Jesus that hits our hearts directly can transform our lives. If you believe in daily hygiene, then I hope that the reason you might be having a hard time hearing the voice of God is not because you have ear wax boulders. If so, buy Q-tips.
As in the example of Louis Pasteur who disproved spontaneous generation by using a flask with a crooked funnel, the real reason why we can’t perceive when God is speaking directly at us is because our hearts are crooked.
What are some ways in which our hearts are crooked?
1) Lack of time to prepare our hearts each day to hear God. We are too rushed, too pressed for time, running around. Why are there more spiritual breakthroughs at retreats when many people testify, I heard God speaking to me through the messages? We can hear God at retreats because we literally put our distractions aside and we enter the retreat having prepared our hearts and with high expectations that we will hear from God. And when God speaks, we actually hear him.
2) We have idols so that when God speaks, we can’t move past the things we are clutching onto.
3) Unconfessed sin, addictions. Sin becomes a barrier to hear the voice of God. That is why John the Baptist urged us to repent in preparation for the coming Christ and the first words out of Jesus’ mouth was “Repent, for the kingdom of God is near.”
4) Fear of failure, fear of what Jesus might say to them, fear of surrendering our lives because what if God sends me to Africa on missions? Don’t worry. For most of us, those fears are unwarranted. God loves the people in Africa too much to send people like us… just kidding. He might send you, but if he does, you will be the right person and he will be with you.
It’s not hard to identify ways in which our hearts are crooked. Now what? You may feel stuck. Practically, I can offer you one suggestion if you’ve taken the time to identify the crookedness of your heart and you still can’t hear God — find a messenger. Get plugged into a church and find a mentor. Ask him/her to disciple you. In the context of rubbing lives with someone who is walking closely with Jesus, he/she can help clean out your ears and straighten out your hearts. Find someone who loves Jesus and stick to that person.