July 6, 2019 Verse Of The Day

1 Peter 3_12

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2 Kings 22:19 Responding To God’s Word

Deer listening

Because your heart was responsive and you humbled yourself before the LORD when you heard what I have spoken against this place and its people–that they would become a curse and be laid waste–and because you tore your robes and wept in my presence, I also have heard you, declares the LORD. 2 Kings 22:19 

Hearing someone is something easy to do and every one can do it. Responding to what a person hears is something different. With as much noise as is going on all around a person, most people do not respond to what they are hearing.

Everywhere a person goes, there are signs saying for people to go the speed limit. Yet, many people do not even try to go the speed limit. Warnings are ignored as people do what they want to do.

They hear what is said, but do not respond to it.

Josiah had become king and followed God. He had the temple restored. In the process of the restoration, the book containing God’s word to the people was found. In it he found out that they had not been following God and God was going to curse and destroy them.

Immediately Josiah tore his robe and began to weep. He realized what they had done was wrong and sought God’s forgiveness. God heard him and held back His anger against the people.

Every Sunday people hear God’s word being preached, yet, many do not respond to it. They think it was a good message…for the other guy…not for themselves. They do not change in any way. They continue to live in sinful ways outside of the church, ignoring what God’s word says.

It is easy to hear what God’s word says, but it takes effort to act upon it, to allow it to change one’s life.

God’s word is alive and active and can change you, if  you allow it. When you hear something God is speaking to you, make the necessary changes. Live according to God’s word.

As a believer, you are to live according to what God desires. If you hear what He is saying and are not doing it, you are disobeying God. Once you hear what He has to tell you, you are responsible to do it. Do not allow God’s word to go in one ear and out the other and never change anything.

God is speaking…are you really listening?

I pray today that you will know what God is saying; that you will act upon God’s word to you; that the Holy Spirit will guide you in what God desires of you; and that God will give you strength to do His will. 

1 Samuel 3:6 Hearing God’s Voice

Rabbit listening

Again the Lord called, “Samuel!” And Samuel got up and went to Eli and said, “Here I am; you called me.” “My son,” Eli said, “I did not call; go back and lie down.” 1 Samuel 3:6 

Everywhere a person goes, he hears voices. People are always talking or they are playing some thing on a radio. There are voices everywhere, saying everything.

Recognizing one voice out of all the voices can be difficult, unless one really knows that voice very well. Moms are often able to pick out their child’s cry or call among a room full of children. Despite all the noise around them, they know their child’s voice.

Samuel had began to hear a voice in the night calling to him. He did not recognize the voice and ran to Eli thinking he called him. Yet, it was not Eli who had called him. The voice was that of God’s voice. God had began to call Samuel to begin working in and through him.

With all the talking going on in this world, people are quick to listen to many of the voices around them. There are times God will begin to call them, but they do not recognize His voice. They believe that other people are being the voice of God and follow that person, rather than God.

Believers have often fallen into the trap of this world, by listening to the voices of this world, rather than listening to God. Some churches are promoting sin and the people agree to it, because they do not recognize the voice of God.

The only way a believer can begin to recognize the voice of God is to listen to Him and pay attention. They need to learn to hear His voice and what He is saying. This begins with tuning out the noise around them and focusing on God.

As a believer, you need to know God’s voice in your life. God is speaking and wants to tell you things. He is a polite God and does not shout, but speaks with a still, calm and quiet voice.

Slow down your life and tune out the world, so you may hear and know His voice. Stay in His word so you may know how God speaks, then listen for Him. God wants to tell you what is on His mind for you. Be willing to hear what He has to say.

I pray today that you will know God’s voice; that you will listen for God to speak into your life; that you will not fear what God has to say; and that you will not be distracted from hearing God by the noise of this world. 

Judges 6:10 Results Of Not Listening

Half Dome

“I said to you, ‘I am the LORD your God; do not worship the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you live.’ But you have not listened to me.” Judges 6:10 

There are times that people go through tough situations in their lives. Sometimes these tough situations are because God is allowing the enemy to test them, to determine where their heart really is. Other times the tough situation is a result of bad choices made, refusing to listen to God’s Holy Spirit guiding and directing them.

The nation of Israel had times that they would be overrun by the enemy. They would cry out to God for some help. At one point God had sent a prophet to them to tell them that He had given them a command not to worship the false gods, yet they chose to worship the false gods. They had chosen to not listen to God and the result of an enemy take over had occurred.

God does not want the enemy to take over His people, in reality He wants the enemy defeated. However, when His people are not listening to Him and doing what He says, He allows the enemy to take over.

The purpose of the enemy taking over is to get the attention of His people back on Him.

God is not out to destroy people, but to build them up and give them life. Yet, if they choose not to listen to Him and follow Him, He will do what it takes to get their attention.

As people go through tough times, most people will call out to God for help. This is one of God’s ways to get their attention and focus back on Him. Every believer needs to stay focused on God and listen to Him as they follow Him.

God is not against you, but is for you. He does not want to destroy you, but He needs to you listen to Him and obey Him. He loves you enough that He will do whatever it takes to keep you focused on Him. This may mean going through some tough times.

If you are going through a tough time, turn your entire focus onto God and not the tough time. Allow God to guide you through the situation.

Even when following God, times may be tough, but He will always give you strength to make it through. Don’t turn away from God, but listen to Him.

I pray today that you will know God’s directions; that you will listen to God; that you will obey God; that you will keep your focus on God; and that you will see God’s work in your life. 

 

1 Thessalonians 5:19 Don’t Quench The Holy Spirit

Flowing water

Do not quench the Spirit. 1 Thessalonians 5:19

All over the world people are seeking for wisdom, guidance and comfort. The variety of ways that they are searching for these things is endless. Some will seek others or books, while others search inside themselves, and yet others will seek for spirits to guide them.

The majority of people in the world like to follow their conscience in knowing how to deal with something. They listen to their conscience and choose a path or action that they feel is the best for themselves. People are constantly told to follow their heart.

Yet, to follow the heart has led this world to where it is today, fallen and in sin. Eve followed her heart and she and Adam were kicked out of the perfect place with eternal life to live in a fallen world of sin.

God did not leave the believer without guidance, He provided for the believer. As Jesus was getting ready to leave the earth, He stated that He would send His Holy Spirit to every believer. The Holy Spirit was sent to comfort and guide believers on their walk with God.

For the believer, the Holy Spirit is that small voice inside of a person telling him what to do, not do, say, and not say. He is guiding the believer in every step of His life, to live a holy, pure life for God.

However, many believers do not listen to what the Holy Spirit is telling them. They ignore the Holy Spirit telling them to turn from a sin, to flee a temptation that is rising. They ignore the Holy Spirit nudging them to tell someone about Jesus. They ignore the Holy Spirit striving to give them wisdom and direction in choices to be made. In these ways, the believer is quenching the Holy Spirit.

This quenching is silencing the voice of the Holy Spirit in the life of the believer. It is putting out the Holy Spirit as water puts out a fire.

Keep your spiritual heart and ears open to what the Holy Spirit is telling you. Do not silence His voice in your life.

Through the Holy Spirit God will guide you in and through every situation in your life. He will steer you on the right path of righteousness for God, keeping you from sin.

Are you listening to what the Holy Spirit is telling you today?

I pray today that you will hear the Holy Spirit speaking to you; that you will allow God to guide your every step, word and action; that you will not silence God’s words to you; and that you will live by faith in what God tells you.

Absent-Minded Listening

Not Really Listening

A few days ago I was driving to a location about three hours away. While driving I had started out listening to a good Christian radio station. After a while I had lost the station and did not feel like slowly searching through the stations to find another good station to listen too.

I decided to pull over for a moment and search for a sermon to listen to online on my phone. I had found a couple that looked like they could be good to listen to, so I started playing one of them while driving.

The first sermon I listened to, I could remember what it was about afterwards. The second sermon, by the same person, after listening to it, I realized I could not remember much about it.

Car Radio

As I though about why I could not remember it, I started to realize that I was driving down the road I could hear the sermon, but my mind was not on it. My mind was thinking about other things. Thinking about things that I was seeing on the road, thinking about things that need to happen, thinking about the job, thinking about the future of things in my life, and thinking about things that had happened.

Later on I thought about what had occurred that day with listening to those sermons and how I listen in life many times. It is easy to let the mind wander around when doing something or listening to something. This causes a person to just be going through the motions of listening, but is not really listening. The ears are hearing, but the heart and mind are not hearing.

Hearing like this can occur a lot in the life of a person. On Sunday mornings, how many times does a person “hear” the sermon, but really does not hear it? He cannot remember what was talked about, he was listening with an absent mind. His thoughts are on something different.

Husbands are often guilty of this type of listening with their wives. I know I am guilty of this at times. My wife will tell me something as I am doing something else or just sitting there, but my mind is not there. Later I will ask again about that subject and she will tell me that she already told me, but I will not remember. I had heard it, but did not really hear it.

Man Not Listening

Parents can also be guilty of this with children and children with parents. Many times things are said that later a person says he never heard said. Children tell parents of their day at school, but the parent really does not hear what was said. Or the parent tells the child to do some chore, and later the child says he never heard it said.

This can also happen very easily when a person is reading the bible. Reading the words and hearing what they say are two different things. God has plenty to say in the bible, if we are just willing to listen to it as we read it.

God is also willing to speak into our lives. How many times do we pray to God for an answer to a question we have, but then do not listen to what God tells us? Sometimes it is that we do not like His answer. Other times we are not really listening for God’s voice.

We are busy searching for an answer or busy doing things in this life, so that we do not hear what God is saying. Then when He gives an answer we do not really hear it and forget it almost immediately or dismiss it as not of God.

As a believer we need to be in tune to what God is saying at all times. God spoke to Elijah in a still quiet voice on the mountain. He does not like to shout and holler His answers to us.

God Speaks In a Quiet Voice

God will speak through other people, children, creation, books, songs, and any other media. You may hear something stated in a movie, a movie that has nothing to do with God, but it speaks a truth of God, or a lie of the devil. He could be pointing out a change that must be made in your life through something you hear or see.

He loves to remind us of His love for us through creation, tells us there is hope of a new day seeing the sunrise. Reminder of provision through seeing a bird that He provides for. Clothing is provided through seeing the plants of the field. How great He is through the stars at night. His majesty through the mountains. Being fishers of men in seeing fish. And the list goes on forever.

Mountain Scene

He may also speak to you to reach out to someone who is in your path. Or to go off your path to reach out to someone.

However, in all of these ways, you must be actively listening. Too often we listen absent-mindedly. Hearing, but not really hearing what is being said. That is when we get discouraged or scared, because we are not hearing what He has to say.

I pray that in the days to come you will be an active listener of God. Seek to hear what He is saying at all times. You will be amazed at how much God is saying, if you are really listening and will apply to your life what He is saying.