Not an original thought here…but as has often been said, we probably miss the times and opportunities in our lives when God speaks to us simply because we are not listening. What kind of follows with this is that we pray in our time and God answers in his time. We cannot know what God has in store for us or when and so we must try and listen at all times. Like many things we try to learn, we should probably practice.
Here are some ways I practice listening to God:
Walking in Others Shoes
I find this especially helpful when someone is irate or in a bad mood. Everyone is not out to get me…maybe they’re just having a bad day. Perhaps someone has let them down or maybe they had a flat tire and were late to work. It’s at these times God is asking me to be compassionate and practice forgiveness. Outside of creating life, forgiveness is the closest we can get to God…to be like God, like Christ on the cross.
Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. – Col 3:13
In the silence is where humility lays. In the silence is where solemnity can be found. In the silence is where the whisper of Faith can be heard. We don’t need to be the center of attention for God to notice us. There’s so much that goes on in the world that distracts us and draws our attention outside from the Holy.
“Be still and know that I am God…” – Ps 46:10
Watch the Children
Often if we want to know what the right thing to do is, we just need to ask ourselves what our children would do. Both through our our teaching and sometimes just innately, children know what the right thing to do is. When we want to know what we should do, if we just ask ourselves what advice would I give my child, we find the answer. It’s a dangerous path to go down sometimes. We might find that we are hypocrites. Perhaps God is telling us something?
And he said: “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. – Mt 18:3
Listen to the Music
“I will incline my ear to a proverb; I will solve my riddle to the music of the lyre.” – Ps 49:4