I was preparing for an oral exam few months ago.Four days before it,I was in a church service listening to a sermon.As the Pastor was preaching,he digressed by citing an example of a musician he loves listening to.Suddenly,I heard God’s voice:”That will be your question on Thursday”.I went for the exam,lo and behold,my examiner brought out my question which read:”Describe a musician you love listening to…” Of course,the rest is history.All glory be to God.
This series can be applied to different life’s situations ranging from making decisions on who to marry to directions for exams to business decisions to choice of schools or careers.
However,let’s begin with four major factors that can prevent one from hearing God.
THE FOUR D’S THAT CAN HINDER A PERSON FROM HEARING GOD
1)DISQUIETUDE:It is an uneasy state of mind usually over the possibility of an anticipated misfortune or trouble.Its synonyms include:Anxiety,agitation, uneasiness,worry, apprehension.
These noises could either be from external or internal sources.They could be bad news,recent break-up,anxiety about a project or an exam,guilt or condemnation etc.They cause turmoil such that one wouldn’t be able to hear when God speaks.His voice would be like a drop of a pin in a noisy market!
For example,David who suffered many heartaches and troubles from Saul prayed about this three times in the Psalms:
“Why are you cast down, O my soul? And why are you disquieted within me? Hope in God, for I shall yet praise Him For the help of His countenance”-Psalm 42:5
“Why are you cast down, O my soul? And why are you disquieted within me? Hope in God; For I shall yet praise Him, The help of my countenance and my God”-Psalm 42:11
“Why are you cast down, O my soul? And why are you disquieted within me? Hope in God; For I shall yet praise Him, The help of my countenance and my God”-Psalm 43:5
When there is a disquietude in your soul,it will be almost impossible to hear God! It is not that God won’t speak to you,but the ongoing commotion or bedlam within your soul will prevent you from hearing Him.
In fact,most times God would have spoken but because you are like a man in a very noisy market,you won’t be able to pick His instructions.
If you could quieten your soul,you would be surprised how fast you could pick God’s voice when He speaks.
After David quitened his soul,he wrote this:
“…I don’t concern myself with matters too great or too awesome for me to grasp.Instead,I have calmed and quieted myself, like a weaned child who no longer cries for its mother’s milk. Yes, like a weaned child is my soul within me”-Psalm 131:1-2
2)DISTRACTION:It is something that turns your attention away from something you want to concentrate on.You want to hear God but something else is interfering with His voice or diverting your attention.
There are many distractions but few are worth mentioning here:
Social media:You can’t say you want to hear God and then spend majority of the day looking at display pictures on various social media platforms!The only voices you will ‘hear’ are those flashes of pictures ‘roaring’ in your subconscious mind!
Busy schedules:You can’t be too busy for God and at the same time ask Him to speak to you on demand just like that.People that hear God very well know that they devote extended hours for God alone.Two hours into seeking His face,God is still silent! He is watching you whether you are really interested in communicating with Him or you want to run away to your busy schedule.He might not say a word until He sees a total surrender from you.I am saying this because of people that will pray for 2minutes,run out because of one distraction or the other and say God has not spoken to them!
The disciples of Jesus nearly wanted Him fall into the trap of ‘busy schedules’ but He didn’t:
“Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed.Simon and his companions went to look for him,and when they found him, they exclaimed: “Everyone is looking for you!“-Mark 1:35-37
“Jesus replied, “Let us go somewhere else–to the nearby villages–so I can preach there also. That is why I have come.”vs 38
There are two lessons to be learnt from what Jesus Christ did:
a)No matter the external pressure or demands from people, you must find time to communicate with God.
b)Any ministry work that does not allow you to pray and hear God for directions constitutes distractions!”Everyone is looking for you” is a scam!Everyone can’t be looking for you!
I was very touched when I listened to one of Joyce Meyer’s broadcasts some months ago.Let me paraphrase her:
“I don’t care if you are not able to come for my meetings,I prefer you have a personal communication or relationship with your God first in the morning instead.If you attend my meetings afterwards,good!”.
That is very deep.Only very few people can say that!
To be continued…