5-year-old: “Knock, knock.”
Dad: “Who’s there?”
5-year-old: “Interrupting cow.”
5-year-old: “Moo!” (giggles hysterically)
This joke is more likely to make you groan than laugh but kids think it’s the funniest thing ever. Yet it has a serious side. I’m sure, you like me, have been interrupted mid sentence by someone else. If you’re like me you’ve probably also caught yourself doing it to others too. And, you’ve probably inwardly rolled your eyes when someone has interrupted you to complain about interrupting people.
Or maybe you’ve been in conversations where there are no interruptions as everyone talks at once and no one listens to a word that is being said. My sister-in-law’s extended family “communicates” like that. Imagine Christmas dinner with all the family around one table, aunties, grandparents, cousins, all talking at once, getting louder and louder because no one is listening to anyone else. It makes me exhausted just picturing it!
Can it be called a conversation if only one person does the talking?
“I pray my list and say my piece
I check you off but I’m incomplete
Seems like what I’m missing most
Is the sound of your voice
So why is it so hard for me
To shut my mouth and let you speak?
Why do I feel the need
To always keep on talking?
Well, I know I need to hear from you
I know what I have got to do
To find what I’ve been missing, yeah
I’ve gotta learn to listen”
It really challenged me to consider how many times I just talk at Jesus. How many times to I simply give Him instructions, requests and complaints without stopping to hear His answer.
God so clearly promises to answer our prayers in Jeremiah 33:3 where He says “Call to me and I will answer you.” How often do we either simply not wait for Him to speak or we just interrupt with another command?
I was reminded yesterday about the story from 1 Samuel when God took time to speak to a young lad named Samuel. As I heard the words “Speak Lord, for your servant is listening” I was again challenged to take time to listen to what Jesus has to say to me.
My Father tells the story of when, as a young man, he went and sat in a church and told God he wouldn’t leave until he had heard from God. My Dad waited, and waited, and waited, for what seemed like an eternity but really was only about forty-five minutes before giving up and leaving. Just as he walked out of the door God very clearly said to him “I already told you what to do.” God had been speaking but my Dad hadn’t heard him.
With all these things in the past few days God has got my attention and I have heard Him say clearly “Excuse me, I was talking to you, are you going to stop and listen?”
So excuse me please, while I go and listen to God…
Many people struggle to hear from God. Do you hear from God? If so, how does He speak to you? Share your experiences; they may help someone else in their journey.
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