Mr. 4-Ever and I traveled to the beautiful Camp Gitche Gumee on the shores of Lake Superior for a retreat I was speaking at this weekend.
All around us is God’s good creation. The white birch trees, the blue lake, the furry critters. It was quiet and peaceful. A great place to get away. We came early and had the benefit of a few extra days in these surroundings.
During the week, I had some work to do—emails to answer, classes to teach, phone calls to return.
As you can probably imagine, the internet has been spotty out here. It got me thinking again about how being connected to the source matters. For my internet AND in our prayer life.
Sometimes when our prayers aren’t being answered—or answered the way and in the timing that we expect—we may begin to wonder if God hears us.
Is he even listening?
The Bible has a clear answer to that: yes.
He is always listening and he hears everything.
Consider just some of these passages:
“God has surely listened and has heard my prayer” –Psalm 66:19
“I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven” -Matthew 16:19
“This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us.” –1 John 5:14
And that’s just a few passages. The Bible is filled with plenty more that promise we have his listening ear.
Check Your Heart
The problem isn’t over his listening, it’s about our own connecting.
I’ve found that when we question whether or not we have God’s attention, it’s time for us to survey our surroundings and our heart.
Are we so entirely distracted by the world and the work and the million other things that demand our attention that we can’t sit quiet long enough to plug into his power source and hear God’s still small voice?
Have we been authentic with our requests?
Have we closed ourselves off from hearing God because of unforgiveness, resentment, or bitterness?
People go to temples and churches to find holy ground where God can be heard. The truth is we can enter into God’s presence anytime and anywhere.
If we know Jesus as Savior, we are a temple of the Lord’s.
Amazingly, even with all the holy heraldry going on in heaven, with millions of angels praising God day and night, and with the earth moaning and groaning, and with seven billion other people on the earth chiming in, still, when you call out to God, he recognizes your voice, and you have his undivided attention.
Astonishing but true. That’s what makes him God.
You can be assured he is listening because he loves you and yearns to have a relationship with you. And his great desire is to speak and have you listen. He has plenty to say.
Have you stopped long enough to listen lately? What do you need to do this week to make time for that?
“Hear my cry for help, my King and my God, for to you I pray.” —Psalm 5:2
Lord, forgive me for the times I think you have abandoned or ignored me. That’s not true, I know. You love me and are listening to every request, every fear, every thought. Thank you, Lord. Help me keep that in my mind—and then help me to patiently listen to you too. Amen.