“My child, pay attention to what I say. Listen carefully to my words.” -Proverbs 4:20 (NLT)

In a world full of noise and many voices, it can become challenging to hear God’s voice. I must admit that hearing God’s voice was a struggle for me. I was trying way too hard to hear, and my head was filled with much noise that left me confused. I couldn’t decipher whether I was hearing myself, the devil, God, or the world. As a result, I became preoccupied with not being able to hear and, at times, thought God wasn’t speaking to me.

This reminds me of Elijah, who let Jezebel’s voice invade his mind after she threatened to kill him (1 Kings 19). This man was so afraid that he fled for his life. Can you imagine? A mighty man of God whose prayer stopped the rain for three and a half years (James 5:17). The same man who had just witnessed fire fall from heaven (1 Kings 18:38). Now, he’s running for his life, overcome by fear and hopelessness, to the point of telling God, “I have had enough.” Elijah’s despair turned into a great big catastrophe, and he even asked God to kill him (1 Kings 19:4). He was so weak that an angel had to show up and give him food for strength. Finally, he got up and walked forty long days and nights, all alone, until he reached a cave.

I have to wonder what happened to Elijah in those forty days. But that day at the cave, in a quiet place with no noise or other distractions, he heard God speak. You see, listening to the wrong voices pushed Elijah to the brink of giving up. Those depressing, fearful, negative voices tried to stop him and alter the course of his life and destiny. 

We are also surrounded by all kinds of noise that try to tug and pull on us: the busyness of life, the news, the world’s opinions, struggling relationships, our distracting minds, etc. All of this noise attempts to drown out the voice of God. It consumes our lives with burdens, worry, sorrow, grief, sleepless nights, and so on. If we allow these things to disturb our souls, then it’s difficult to be at rest so we can hear what God is saying. We can’t afford to let a stranger’s voice control our lives and steal our peace (John 10:5).

Our job is to pay attention to what God is saying. In fact, I finally realized that the noise in my head was consuming me, and all my strivings were overpowering God’s voice. All I had to do was be still, pay attention, listen, and let Him speak. So, I want to encourage you not to let life’s busyness hinder your communication with the Father. Perhaps it’s time to slow down and make room in your heart so you can hear what He’s saying.

The Father’s inviting you into His arms of fellowship. He’s bidding you to come to His chamber of love and communion. That whisper from Him could transform your relationship problem or bring healing to your soul. Let your hearing come alive as He shares His heart with you. Take some time to share what’s in yours. If you experience internal conflict, get still before Him and quiet your soul. You’ll find so much rest and peace. There’s no limit to how He’ll speak to you. Just be open to receiving and listening.

Stephanie Jones