We pray and we pray, we make it our habit and take pride that it has become a part of our daily routine. But we also cry and complain that even though we trust in God and pray persuasively our lives are not on the course that we want. The thing we fail to realize that even though we are praying to God, are we listening to God?
In Bible we read that God spoke directly to people like Moses and Abraham so it was very easy for them to know Gods will and talk to Him. Most of us are not at that place as God chooses certain people for certain things so we don’t have those kind of encounters. We are left wondering what God is saying to us. Trying to do things according to his ways but still there is a void left inside that doesn’t seems to fulfill us and we are always left wanting because we are praying but not listening to God. So how can we really listen to what God is saying to us?
Yes the direct method of conversation with God is prayer, but a conversation is complete when both sides take part in it. You are saying what is in your heart to God but you are not able to listen what He is saying to you. So you are left confused and do things that seem fit and right to you.
Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. – James 1:22
Now when you pray what you say to God. Everyone has his or her own way of communicating with God. You thank Him, you ask from Him, you ask for His forgiveness and God loves those who repent. The key is to empty our hearts and prepare yourself to listen through prayer. Ask Him that dear God please speak to me as I want to hear your voice and want to know what you are saying to me. Don’t be depressed if you don’t hear an actual voice speaking to you God can speak to you through other ways and some of them are mentioned below, so keep asking and praying to God for His communion and ultimately you will recognize His voice as you will develop an intimate communication bond with Him. Here are some of my favorite lines that explain communication of God in a beautiful way…
If someone prays for patience, you think God gives them patience? Or does he give them the opportunity to be patient? If he prayed for courage, does God give him courage, or does he give him opportunities to be courageous? If someone prayed for the family to be closer, do you think God zaps them with warm fuzzy feelings, or does he give them opportunities to love each other?
Reading the Bible
Man does not live on bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth of the LORD – Deuteronomy 8:3
How do you recognize a person’s voice, , it’s by spending time with that person, and what better way to spend time with God then by reading His word. If you make reading the Bible your habit you will surely get the understanding on so many matters that require God’s guidance.
Make a timetable in your daily schedule so that you can spend a reasonable time reading Bible, try making choices based on that. Cut back on some activities. Often it happens with me that whatever I am seeking and asking from God or thing to ask Him in prayer I open my Bible to read and the exact scripture or verse comes in front of me and I immediately know that this is what God is telling me. So try to make it a habit to read Bible every day and you will know what God is intends to tell you.
Surrender and Wait
The clay cannot transform into a beautiful pot if it doesn’t surrender in to the potters hands, if the clay is too rigid it will break in to pieces. The same goes with our hearts and minds, it we do not surrender ourselves to God we will remain broken and lost inside.
The LORD is far from the wicked but he hears the prayer of the righteous – Proverbs 15:29.
So surrender yourself in His presence, ask Him to guide you and that you want Him to speak to you. Wait for His answer, sometimes we let our impatience get over us and complain that God doesn’t listen’s to us. Ecclesiastes 3 says that “There is a time for everything” so remember that everything that you ask God will give it in its due time. Charles Stanley says that we should never let our deadlines determine our future. If they come don’t panic let them pass. God will ultimately reveal what He wants from you but patience is the key.
Keep your Ears and eyes on the Hunt
Yes keep them on the hunt for signs. They can come while you are reading a scripture, listening to a song, having a conversation with a friend listening to a sermon and many other ways. The key is to catch those words and understand what they mean to you. So always be on alert may be God is speaking in front of you and you just ignore because you don’t pay attention.
When we pray we spend too much time sharing what’s in hour heart that we don’t give God the time to speak to us. Relax your mind while praying and spend some minutes in quite meditation. For some people it’s the voice speaking in their head that guides them, for some it’s the feeling of being drawn to do something, God has so many different ways to address a person. So just give yourself some quite time, Listen.
In my distress I called to the Lord;
I cried to my God for help;
From his temple he heard my voice;
My cry came before him, into his ears.