So, my son has recently learned a new word, and what’s so interesting is that I believe he learned it from a Bible App that’s made for little ones. The app is interactive, and it tells the story of creation, the fall, the birth of Christ, and a few other major story lines from the Bible. The depiction of the fall of man is played out complete with background music, sound effects, and narration. We see Eve, the serpent beguiling her, and Adam following suit. Adam and Eve hide in fear and shame when they hear God, and when God calls Adam to the carpet for eating of the fruit of the tree, Adam looks at him with a blank stare, says, “Huh?” and he points to Eve. (This is where the blame game started my friends!)
Well, my precious 2 year old will now use this word when I tell him to do something that he doesn’t particularly care to do.
It goes something like this:
“Don’t touch that, please. It could break, and mommy doesn’t want you to get hurt.” – “Huh?”
Then, looking right in his eyes, I repeat, “Don’t touch that, please. It could break, and mommy doesn’t want you to get hurt.” – “Huh?”
I might repeat it one more time, and then I look at him, and I say, “You know what I said.”
When Your Children Won’t Listen
Did you know that anyone who teaches people about the word of God gets the best illustrations by watching their own children! You may think I am going to now head into a discourse on toddler behavior problems, but I’m not. These several verbal exchanges with my son have brought to light scriptural truth, and you might get some answers here for yourself if you have been wondering why God doesn’t seem to be answering your prayers, or why it seems hard to hear His voice these days.
Just as your children sometimes have selective hearing, God’s children can also sometimes look at God with a blank stare, and say, “Huh?” when it comes to doing something they don’t particularly want to do. Oh, yes, God will be gracious and merciful, and He will repeat what He told you in case you didn’t quite get it the first time, but there comes a point that He says, “You know what I said.”
Most of us are enlightened far beyond the level of our obedience, or in other words, God has shown us things we must do, but we’re not doing them. Many times when we are seeking direction, answers, solutions to problems, or wisdom for the future, and it seems that heaven is silent, we need to go back and check to see whether we are doing the things that God has already directed us to do.
I can tell you right now, if I spoke to my son and told him that we were going to drive to the store and get some ice cream, he would emphatically say, “Let’s go!” and proceed to the door before I could even put his shoes on. This same child, in the same moment, could get another directive, “…but you have to clean your room first,” and to this he might say, “Huh?”
How can the same child, with the same ears, listening to the same voice, hear one directive so clearly, and be so dull of hearing with another?
Many times we pray, “God, show me what to do. God, I’ll do anything, I’ll go anywhere. God, I need wisdom. God, I need answers.” Then God prompts you to go to someone and apologize for something, or to forgive another for a wrong committed against you. He may lead you to give of your finances to a person or project, or to give of your time doing something that will require sacrifice. HE IS SPEAKING, but we pretend not to hear. Internally we say, “Huh?” and we convince ourselves that God is choosing to be silent for some mysterious reason. Do you see that our receiving correction is connected to our receiving direction? Our receiving answers is connected to our obedience? That DOING is connected to HEARING?
I believe the Apostle James had something to say about this:
“But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.” ~ James 1:22
When we hear and we don’t do, we can become capable of deceiving ourselves. Deception simply means to be led astray. When we don’t do what we know to do, we don’t walk in the light we’ve been given, and we begin to walk in darkness. That’s why people become confused about the will of God, the direction of God, the lack of solutions to their problems, and a number of other areas of life.
How about you? Are you in a place today where you feel that you can’t hear God’s voice? Does it seem that you’ve been seeking answers, and you aren’t getting them? Are there areas of your life that you seem to be navigating blindly – areas that leave you feeling confused and frustrated? I want to encourage you to go to God with a willing and open heart, asking Him to show you whether there is something that He has already directed you to do that you are not doing. God is so merciful, so patient, and He so desires to give you the answers and direction that you are seeking!
In one moment of honesty and surrender, the Holy Spirit can pinpoint an action that can be taken TODAY, that will bring clarity and light where you have been experiencing darkness and confusion.
You can start by praying this prayer in faith,
“God, I am asking you today to show me whether there is anything you have directed me to do that I am not doing. If you’ve given me light and revealed to me things, and I have not obeyed, I am asking for mercy, Lord. Show me again, and I purpose in my heart to do those things that you tell me to do, even if it’s hard. I am asking you for the truth, Lord, and I am willing to see, and I am willing to hear, and I am willing to DO. I believe, by faith, that you hear me, and that my prayer is pleasing to you, and I believe that you will answer. Amen”