When someone asks you, are you willing to…. what is your initial response? If you are like me, it depends on who is doing the asking. My willingness to respond to a request has a lot to do with the relationship I have with the person doing the asking. I realized that was true at a recent writers’ retreat I recently attended. The main speaker asked us,
“How willing are you to listen to God?”
Pause a moment and let that question sink in. What does willing mean to you?
The dictionary definition of willing is “ready, eager, or prepared to do something:” So if you put that definition in that question, it reads,
How ready, eager, or prepared are you to listen to God?
In these pandemic times, when things are unsettled, unknown and influx, what are parameters for you in listening and actually hearing God?
I believe there may be some assumptions to make in being willing to listen to God.
You trust God to be willing to listen to Him
If you are like me, it is hard to listen to anyone I don’t trust. As I practice listening to God, I find more and more, He keeps His promises. He is who He says He is. He is faithful to provide. I have to keep giving things over to Him so I can see His hand at work.
Commit everything you do to the Lord.
Trust him, and he will help you.Psalm 37:5 NLT
Listening takes time and practice. The Bible scriptures help you listen. But more than that, it takes trust and a relationship so that you can be willing to do what it takes to be ready, prepared and eager. He says He will strengthen you and help you. He will uphold you with His righteous right hand. When have you seen His hand at work in your life to help you?
You believe He has something to say to you personally
When has that happened to you? When has God asked you to do something that turned out to be either for your greater good or for the greater good of your family? Have things happened that surprise you? He sees a bigger picture than we do and we can trust Him to tell us His path.
Seek his will in all you do,
and he will show you which path to take. Proverbs 3:6 NLT
In my writing a book about prayer conversations, He continually guides the content of the book, including conversations that people are having with Him about sheltering in place. I am to be listening to His directions, no matter what. It has been fascinating to see the path the book has been taking. It certainly has taken twists and turns.
You listen to Him because you are ready, eager and prepared
By being willing to listen to God, you put yourself in a place to listen- ready, eager, prepared. What kind of picture does that create in your mind?
It looks different for different people. Some people hear God through the scriptures and letting Him speak to them that way. Others hear God by reviewing their day and noticing His fingerprints – where they felt close to God and where they felt further away.
Still, others are finding they listen better as they take long walks or runs. They hear His voice whispering as they move,
“Pray for _____.”
There are a variety of ways to form a relationship with God, just as there are a variety of people.
What does that look like for you? How can you place yourself in a position to hear God more clearly?
As you ponder how willing you are to listen to God, I hope that your curiosity has been aroused. Take a little time each day and ask yourself and God,
“How willing am I to listen, God?”
“What would you like me to hear?”
I would love to know what kinds of conversations you end up having. It is such a wonder to have conversations with God and so encouraging to share those conversations with each other, especially in challenging times. He delights in each of us and I think He smiles when we share those conversations. If you would like to know more about how to have different conversations with God, feel free to reply to this blog.
Nancy Booth wants to create safe spaces for you, helping you find ways to have two-way conversations with God. She loves encouraging you to look for ways He is at work. Nancy is a spiritual director and writer. She would love to accompany you on your journey of discovery to hear and see more of the God who delights in you. Peace, hope and freedom could be yours Contact her today..