Most of us enjoy a good conversation. We exchange ideas with another person and we take turns being the talker and being the listener. It satisfies something deep inside of us to know that we have communicated and connected with someone else.
Sometimes though, when it comes to prayer, it feels like a one-way conversation. We pray and pray, and we wonder if God can hear what we’re saying. When you suffer from an illness, you want to feel better as soon as you possibly can and so you want God to heal you. You want God to hear your prayers and answer. It takes time. It can even take a long time. You may wonder if God is listening.
One of the things I learned through my stroke experience is that God knew exactly what I was going through. He was not only listening to me, but He was listening to my wife’s prayers and the prayers of a whole lot of my friends as well. He was listening to my cries of dismay and despair and even those few moments when I could actually thank Him for my circumstances. He was listening.
One thing I’m not as sure about though, is whether or not I was listening. Sometimes we’re really good at talking to God, but we’re not so good at simply waiting for His response. We’re not good at listening for His voice. In fact, I will admit that I sometimes find it hard to be a listener when it comes to God. After all, talking gives me something to do, but listening requires a kind of stillness, a kind of quietness I’m not used to and one that doesn’t make me comfortable.
Psalm 46 reminds us though that God wants us to be still and know that He is God. Perhaps if all we’re hearing is the sound of our own voices, it may mean that we have to do a better job of quieting the noises around us and listening. He may just have an answer for us that we hadn’t considered.
Let’s all listen with our whole hearts today to the only One who can make a difference in our lives tomorrow. Lean in and listen!
But God did listen!
He paid attention to my prayer.
Praise God, who did not ignore my prayer
or withdraw his unfailing love from me.
Psalm 66:19-20 NLT