Still and Listening
(Ps. 46:10, Rom. 10:17, Hebrews 3-4, 1 John 2:20,27)
Be still and know that I am God. Many of us hear this said often. If you have never heard this before, pay close attention. That is the point of this message. Paying attention. The psalmist heard it directly. He wrote what he heard. He was not parroting something he heard from another. He heard from God. Moses spoke with God as a man speaks with his friend. A continual call goes out from God by His Spirit. Come up higher. The potential for knowing Him more than before is unchanging.
The Lord’s passion is to be known. Jesus invites us to prepare for a marriage feast. I am being consumed with this on His behalf. The apostles carried this fire. Zeal for His house consumed them. The Father’s heart is yearning as He sends us as shepherds looking for the one who is lost. You meet them every day often without knowing their stories. You will simply stop and say a word or two. A response will come and you continue. His Spirit in you is reaching out to them. He sends us into the world wherever we may find ourselves and He is drawing others to find their seat at His table. He wants every seat to be taken. I think no limit exists to the number of seats. Only He knows the number. His thoughts are higher than ours.
In these days, some struggle with the notion that we can hear God speak. Some prefer to express it as God caused them to know. We tangle it up with our semantics. If Moses learned by experience to know God face to face, thousands of years before God was displayed to us in the person of Jesus Christ, why should we not expect such today? As I write that, I am reminded of the kindness of the Lord. He is not concerned at all with our semantics. He can cause us to know Him no matter what words we use to tell the story. But be careful not to dismiss what you have not experienced. Have you spoken with angels directly? Many have. Do you believe that Mary herself has visited some young women in eastern Europe, speaking with the teenagers like an older sister? She has. The cloud of witnesses is not far off.
He is the same, yesterday, today, and forever. The more we experience of Him and heavenly realities, the more we let go of this present evil age. In our earnest desire to keep our left brains doctrinally correct, we do not believe stories of deep faith. The Lord responds to faith. And it is often from those we might least expect. Jesus marveled at a Roman centurion who knew He could simply say words and healing would be carried to his servant. The Lord speaks, angels hear and go, and the cells of a person respond. Perhaps, the angels were not even involved. Do we need to know every detail? We never will but that does not mean we ought not pursue understanding. The point is do not be unbelieving. Believe God.
Faith comes by hearing and hearing by a spoken word of God. In the reference from Romans, Paul is speaking of those who preach, who speak, who declare the words of God. He makes it clear that such are sent by God. They have not spoken on their own initiative. How many voices are out in the earth? Too many we would say. But the Lord’s bondservants speak. And God Himself speaks. Are we quiet enough to hear Him? Are we discerning to hear truth among the many voices? May our ears be tuned. John writes that we have an anointing, the Spirit of God, in us so that no man need teach us. In Psalm 46, the writer speaks of trouble. In the middle of the swirls around us, be still. He will speak. The writer of Hebrews reminds us that those who did not hear with faith never moved on from the wilderness. The Lord delivers us out of oppressive circumstances (like Egypt) that we might learn His faithfulness in all things. Listen and believe. He is God and will be exalted in our lives and among the nations.