In our busy culture how do we find time to hear God’s voice? We don’t. Though ‘finding time’ is a common expression in our culture do you know anyone who has found time laying around in the street or forgotten somewhere by someone else? Recently at work I went to use the washroom and to my surprise found a very nice cell phone in the stall. The previous occupant must have been trying to ‘find time.’
What does wisdom tell us about time? We need to set priorities with the time Yahweh has given us. One thing that has become clear to me over the years is that what we can easily discern what we truly value by how we spend our time. It would be even clearer if our bank accounts were revealed and others saw where our money went. Our true values are expressed in how we invest our time and money.
If I put all of my activities in my calendar for others to examine I hope they would find that I value my relationship with Jesus, my family and other relationships, health/exercise, and the outdoors. These things are not always in the balance I would like but that is the balance I seek to maintain by paying attention to how I invest my time. Yes, time has been given to us as a resource to invest in the bank of the present for a return on our investment in eternity.
Given that the Holy Spirit sees our real calendars, what would a dialogue with Him about our schedules sound like?
In examining time and schedules one way we are called to invest our time is in hearing His voice. This truth is plainly evident in the scriptures and below are a few examples with some portions emphasized. In John 10 Jesus began His teaching describing how natural sheep respond to the voice of their shepherd then applied it to Himself as our Shepherd.
16 And other sheep I have which are not of this fold; them also I must bring, and they will hear My voice; and there will be one flock and one shepherd. John 10:16
(NKJV) 27 My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me. John 10:27 (NKJV)
8 Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded. James 4:8 (NKJV)
14 For God may speak in one way, or in another, Yet man does not perceive it. 15 In a dream, in a vision of the night, When deep sleep falls upon men, While slumbering on their beds, 16 Then He opens the ears of men, And seals their instruction. Job 33:14-16 (NKJV)
Given that He wants to speak to us there are two questions;
- Are we listening?
- How do we train our hearts to hear?