|Words have a power all their own (Photo credit: Lynne Hand)|
Talking more often means we have less time for listening to God speak to us. Besides opening our mouths to pray, we must truly have time to listen to him. One way we listen to God is by reading his Word. I remember a song we used to sing as kids that comes from Psalms 119:105 "Thy word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path." His Word and his presence in our hearts is our sanctuary and fellowship with him.
We also need to take time to listen to others. Listening is not just hearing but understanding and engaging in what someone is saying. Several sermons ago, my pastor told a story about his son telling him to listen with his eyes. The head coach for the baseball team I help with always says that to the team as well. There are many reasons to listen and many verses to back those reasons up.
Our listening must not only compete with our words but also our thoughts and our surroundings. And this world isn't going to start moving any slower. As we fail to listen to God and others, we fail to truly live; instead, we exist in our own arrogance and foolishness. We tend to think that we are in control of our own lives, which is one of the many snares of selfishness. One of Satan's best deceptions is making us think that we have everything under control. In doing that, he succeeds in making sure we forget to give control over to God.
When we give our hearts to Jesus, we're supposed to be surrendering our lives and complete control over to him. Of course, what happens is we establish a relationship with Jesus Christ in which we daily make the decision to let him have control over things. It is here where my life verse steps into the picture. "Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct your paths." Proverbs 3:5-6
What we do with our lives is our biggest witness for Christ, and it is important that God be at the helm. We must listen to him, and we must give him control over everything. These two things aren't always easy to do, but we can ask God to help us do them. We often do this when things go wrong. "We felt we were doomed to die and saw how powerless we were to help ourselves; but that was good, for then we put everything into the hands of God, who alone could save us." 2 Corinthians 1:9
We need to seek God first, listen, and surrender control to him ALL of the time. There are no limits to what God can do in our lives if we put our faith and trust in him. "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me."
Proverbs 2:1-5 says "My son, if you receive my words and treasure up my commandments with you, making your ear attentive to wisdom and inclining your heart to understanding; yes, if you call out for insight and raise your voice for understanding, if you seek it like silver and search for it as for hidden treasures, then you will understand the fear of the Lord and find the knowledge of God.