[00:00:00] Good morning, everyone. Yeah, it's so good to have you here. I want to welcome you. Welcome to you here, you there. Wherever you are in any of our campuses. Welcome and welcome to our online community. And I told you a couple of weeks ago for the very first time we were started, actually broadcasting out where this service is now the one that's going out online.
[00:00:22] I asked them if they would put this camera here. So that I could just say welcome to those of you who are joining us online. Jennifer in San Diego. Welcome. So glad you're here. And Lisa in... gosh, I don't even know how you see your name. British Columbia. Welcome. And everyone else who's on our online community.
[00:00:40] We are so glad you're here and they're going to make some noise to let you know we're glad you joined us. There we go. It's all good. Seriously, glad to have you. Okay. So let me get started here. I want to, I want to tell you about a man who was very concerned about his wife, who was concerned that she was losing her hearing.
[00:00:58] And he [00:01:00] didn't want to make her uncomfortable. He didn't want to make her on edge in any way whatsoever. He didn't want to threaten her about it. And so what he did was he was talking to a friend of his, I wonder if there's anything I could do where I don't want to take her to a doctor. And he said, you know what
[00:01:13] you ought to do? You have to just run your own experiment. He goes, what do you, what do you mean run your own experiment? He said, well, sometime when she she's got her back to you, you ought to... Like start from like 20 feet behind her and say something to her and see if she hears you. And if she doesn't move like five feet closer and if he doesn't move five feet closer and figure out like how bad is her hearing?
[00:01:32] He goes that's a great idea. So what he did was he went home and his wife actually was, had her back to him. Cause she was in the kitchen, she was cooking dinner and so he thought this was the perfect time. And so he got 20 feet behind her and he says, simply honey, what's for dinner? There's no response. He got five feet closer and he said, honey, what's for dinner? Still nothing.
[00:01:54] And he's like, Oh... five feet closer. He was five feet away from her. Honey, what's for dinner? She didn't say a word. [00:02:00] He got right behind her. And he said, honey, what's for dinner? And she said for the fourth time, Spaghetti. How well do you hear? You know, when you don't hear, well, people can talk to you and you don't hear a single thing that they're saying, and you hear things that actually aren't said.
[00:02:21] So we're in this series right now... [obnoxious noises] Hey!!!
[00:02:33] Do you mind? Guys. You had your moment. You had your time. Can I preach now? You'll... okay. All right. Can we do this later? We'll see you next service. All right. Let's hear it for the band. Wow. Yeah. Um, what I, what I said was, um, w when you don't hear, well, you hear things that aren't said, and [00:03:00] you don't hear things that are said.
[00:03:01] And so we started a series last week called NOiSE, and we're just talking about hearing loss where it's like, things are happening around us, but we're, we're so distracted. There's so much commotion. There's so much environmental noise. That the truth of the matter is, is we don't hear, like we used to hear when we don't hear, like we should hear.
[00:03:19] So I want to talk about that and that's what we're going to wrestle with today. And again, I'm excited for the series that we're in. So let me just say this. Uh, if you're a married, my guess is somewhere along the journey, your spouse has accused you of having, what do we call it? Selective hearing. Anybody?
[00:03:38] Am I, the only one? Selective hearing is what, when you hear what you want to hear and you don't hear what you don't want to hear and that sort of thing, and like nothing ever really happens between Lisa and I, but let's just pretend like it does. So this is how it would go. It, it certainly does happen here.
[00:03:54] Here's how it would go. It'd go something like this. So I might come home and maybe on a [00:04:00] Sunday after church, like, I'll go home and, and my wife will be sitting at home. And so she's maybe watching the Cardinals game or something and I'll walk in and I'll go to the kitchen. And I'll say something that I heard I was talking to so-and-so and I'll say, Hey, did you know that so-and-so and it would be whatever the year is so-and-so is moving to Juno that so-and-so they had a baby.
[00:04:17] Did you, did you know that? So-and-so and she'll say, yeah, I knew that. And then I'll say, well, why didn't you tell me? And she goes, I did tell you. And I go, no, no, you didn't. And she goes, yes, I did. And then I'll double down. Cause I'm confident. I'll go. There's absolutely no way you told me that. And she said, not only did I tell you that I can tell you exactly when and where told you that. Anyone? And, or am I just married to the only one?
[00:04:42] Right. And I'll go. No, I never, you'd never said it. She goes, I'll tell you exactly. You came home from church, you walked in. I asked how you're doing. You said fine. You walked over to the refrigerator. And then you open the refrigerator. And then I got up and I was watching the Cardinals game. I got up and then I walked over to you and then you reached it in the refrigerator.
[00:04:58] You pulled out leftover Kentucky [00:05:00] fried chicken, and you put like two wings and one drumstick on your plate. I said, are you going to eat that cold? You said, yes. And then, and then the Cardinals scored. And then I told you. And I'll go, the Cardinal scored? The last thing I heard, and that is called selective hearing.
[00:05:17] And sure enough, she told me she has a clear memory of when she told me. And again, I'm, I guess, as you've experienced that, how many times has sobody said something to you and you didn't get it because you weren't listening or you weren't paying attention. And the more important question is how many times has God told you something important, but you didn't listen and you didn't hear because you weren't paying attention.
[00:05:35] And that's what we want to wrestle with today. So the simple thing is, have you heard from God lately? I know that might sound funny to you, but have you heard from God lately? And I don't want to put three, just three things I want to wrestle with quickly. Does God still communicate to us? Does God still communicate?
[00:05:53] Number two, if he does, how does he communicate? And then thirdly, how do I best [00:06:00] listen? So that's where we're going to go. And that's what we're going to wrestle with. This just start though. Does God's still communicate. We know he certainly used to communicate. There's no question that you use to communicate. You, you open your Bible to Genesis chapter one and nine times in the first chapter of the Bible, you're going to come across the words.
[00:06:15] God said, God said, in fact, if you just keep reading, you'll, you'll get into conversations where God's like, let me show you. I'll just say a couple of passages. Okay. And so this Genesis eight, eight, 15, then God said to Noah, He said to Noah at Genesis 17:9 then God said to Abraham, God said Abraham, and then just 35 one, then God, then God said to Jacob and God, God said, it's just so clear.
[00:06:38] God, God clearly spoken. You can't miss this as you read it. All right. And I can keep going, but you get the idea. So not only did God speak with his voice, he would also speak through people that were called prophets and prophets were people whose message would be something from God. And they would preface it with, Thus
[00:06:56] sayeth, the Lord. Thus sayeth the Lord. However, it's a [00:07:00] translation, but I'm speaking on God's behalf. And he told me to tell you and they were prophets, and it was not uncommon to have prophets. Um, God also spoke through angels. You might remember when, um, a Lot was living in Sodom and God said angels to Sodom, to destroy Sodom and Gomorrah.
[00:07:17] And the angels got in a conversation. And God said to through the angels, God. And warned Lot. You've got to get out of here. There's times when God would speak through a vision where somebody would actually see something and they would experience something like, so you can read this in Genesis 46 and God spoke to Israel.
[00:07:36] That's a person. That's this guy, God spoke to Israel in a vision at night, Jacob, Jacob, and then he spoke to him. Okay. Yeah, absolutely. God spoke in the Bible, but the question is, is does God still speak. Does God still try to communicate. Let me ask you a simple question. How many of you, how many of you have a relationship with somebody you never never speak to [00:08:00] ever, ever, ever, like it's been years or decades or the last century.
[00:08:04] Okay. As long, long time ago, the truth of the matter is, is we understand if you're going to have a relationship with somebody, you have to communicate. Communication is absolutely crucial. You have to keep short accounts, you have to be able to communicate. What kind of a father would God be to us? As his children, he never wanted to speak to us.
[00:08:24] What kind of a good father would be that never wanted to communicate with his children? What kind of a mom would never want to? Why do we think God doesn't want to talk? When I was a kid and I didn't, I didn't have a father. I grew up without a father. You know what I wanted in the worst way to hear my father's voice.
[00:08:40] I never heard it. You know what means more to me these days as a father, when I hear my kids voices. Why do you think God doesn't want to communicate? He certainly does. And it's just the reality. Now he might not communicate exactly the same way as I just showed you in the old covenant. [00:09:00] In fact, there's a really interesting thing.
[00:09:02] As it's talking about the new covenant in the book of Hebrews, it says this, I want to show you this Hebrews. This is how the book begins. In the past, God spoke to our ancestors through the prophets. At many times. And in various ways we just talked to you about some, but in these last days, he has spoken to us by his son. And he understand what he's saying.
[00:09:25] My son is the expression I want you to see. I want you to hear, I want you to see in this. This is why we say, if you just pay attention to Jesus, man, you have so much insight. Sometimes when Lisa and I will talk all say, honey, I just want you to hear my heart. You ever heard that expression? Of course you have.
[00:09:43] I just want you to hear my heart. You know, Jesus is just expression of the heart of God. It's God saying, I just want you to hear my heart. This is what I meant. This is what I meant. We've got it so wrong in so many ways guys go. No, no, this is, this is just want you to hear my heart. In fact, in Hebrews [00:10:00] one three, I read the first couple of verses.
[00:10:01] Let me read the next one. The son, Jesus is the radiance of God's glory and the exact representation of his being. Sustaining all things by his powerful word. This is the voice of God. Jesus called the Lagos, the lagos of God. The word of God. When you hear this, you've heard the final word as it were, um, in Jesus.
[00:10:23] Uh, I love how Jesus would teach Jesus would say things. And then he puts this little saying and I'll just pick a couple of examples. He puts this little saying like Mark four, nine, Jesus said whoever has ears to hear, let them hear. You always say, it's not all of you going to get this. Not all of you are listening.
[00:10:39] Not all of you are paying attention. Some of you are going to get this, so you have ears to hear. In fact, he even shorten that down. Let me show you, whoever has ears, let him hear. He knew when he would have ears, which is why so often he would say things like, would you listen? Like, here's just look, listen to me.
[00:10:54] Remember your teacher used to say that? Your parents, listen to me! [00:11:00] Jesus would say, listen to me, everyone, and understand this. Jesus is trying to tell you about the father. He's trying to explain to us what God wants us to know. Now this is a very simple, very archaic illustration. I got it. This is a radio.
[00:11:19] This is an antenna. All right. So you turn the radio on, but that's, that's nitpicking. I mean,
[00:11:39] that'd be really careful with, I have no idea what's going to broadcast. It could be really embarrassing. Okay. So here's, here's what this simple illustration is illustrating while I've been talking that first part, we put audible noise in the, in the room and you go, I can't hear a thing you're saying.
[00:11:54] Right, right, right. But there's all kinds of stuff flying through the air. And I just hit three channels. [00:12:00] K did have the intent to pick it up until we tuned it in. There's all kinds of stuff. I think God is trying to say to us right now and some get it and some don't because we don't have our antenna up.
[00:12:12] We're not. We're not on as it were. We're not listening. We're not hearing what he's trying to tell us. Yes God does speak. Does he still speak? Yes. He still speaks, but you got to pick up the signal. Well then how does he speak? Okay. Okay. Okay. I know, I know that Jesus was God. And when Jesus walked around and--Jesus was speaking, you could hear from God through the voice of Jesus, but pastor Jesus rose from the dead and he's in heaven now.
[00:12:40] And. So, what are we supposed to do now? We don't have Jesus among us. And where, where are we going to get the message now? Can I show you something Jesus said? This is so cool. This is so cool. In fact, I'll show you two verses I think illustrate this John 16, seven says, but very truly I tell you, Jesus had very, truly, I tell you [00:13:00] it is for your good that I am going away unless I go away the advocate.
[00:13:05] That's what the Holy spirit. Will not come to you. But if I go, I will send him to you. Cause we're only going to Jesus. Don't leave. You're gonna leave us as orphans don't even just cause no, no, no. It's a good thing. How could it be a good thing that Jesus left then the spirit came. Here's how. Jesus being
[00:13:21] one of us was limited to time and space. One place at a time, one place at a time. He says, I'm going to send my spirit. My Spirit's going live in your hearts. You're going to take up residence in your heart and wherever you go, he's going to go. He's going to be with you all the time. It's better. And in fact, if you go down a little bit further in that same chapter, but when he, the spirit of truth comes. Now catch this. He will guide you into all the truth.
[00:13:46] What does that mean? It means the spirit of God is going to direct your life. And I could direct your life if I were directly with you Jesus, is saying, but I'm one place one time he's going to be with you everywhere you go at all [00:14:00] times and he'll guide you. He'll direct you. This is awesome news. So. I have a counselor.
[00:14:06] Yeah. I have a mentor. Yes. I have a guide. Yes, this is awesome. So how does God then speak to me? How does God speak to you? Let me show you a couple of ways right now, how he can speak to you first and foremost, first and foremost, he speaks to you through the word, the written word, the word of his, why we call it the word of God.
[00:14:29] This is the word of God. Let me show you something. Second Timothy three. It says this all scripture, all of it. Okay. Is God-breathed. Now let me explain what this God-breathed is the word inspired and some of your versions say inspired. All, all scripture is inspired. God's breath. When you open up this and you go, you, you got the breadth of God.
[00:14:57] That's what this is. This is God's [00:15:00] listen, listen, listen. Expression. To you to make an impression on you. It's God breathing out so you can breathe in what was very breath is. So all scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness. It's awesome. How does God guide through his word through his word?
[00:15:23] So, so, so this has the answers to every dilemma I'll ever have. Now listen carefully. No. Well, no, um, every dilemma you're facing, you're not going to find a chapter in a verse is going to address that. So the Bible is only useful for some teaching for some rebuking, for some correcting for some training.
[00:15:43] No, no, no, no, no. All of this is the breath of God, but don't miss what I'm about to say. You make a mistake if you believe that all God could ever speak, is he spoken, listen carefully, listen very carefully right now. You can fall off a cliff here if you're not careful. [00:16:00] This is the breath of God, but it's not the only breath that God ever breathed.
[00:16:05] Now, nothing else I'm going to say is from God, if it contradicts what he's already expressed. That is going to be crucial. God's communicating pick, pick up the signal. Okay. It's not just this. It's this. Plus other ways that you can start to pick up the spirit of God before you, you go, okay, well, you're blowing my mind.
[00:16:28] You're known as stay with me and think with me, the spirit is come to guide you into all the truth. So how does the spirit guide me into truth? It's not going to contradict scripture. That would not be from the spirit of God. But what about dilemmas I find myself like, like Elijah found himself in a dilemma in the old Testament.
[00:16:48] Here's what happened. Okay. He was on the top of a mountain, Mount Carmel. And it was a showdown between him and 400 prophets of this false god, Baal. And it was, it was like, it was like the OK Corral. It was a shootout. [00:17:00] Okay. And man all kinds of things. Crazy stuff has happened. And fire comes down from God and it was like a contest to see who the real God was.
[00:17:08] And what ended up happening he goes that the prophets of Baal would make it all this commotion. They were cutting themselves. They're running in circles, they're doing all this. And then God. Uh, showed up when I just said, God, if you're there just like this fire and boom, the fire lights is awesome story, but then what happens is all the people go, those are false prophets and they kill them all.
[00:17:27] And there's a lady who was really fond of them named Jezebel. Okay. Maybe the one of those wicked women that ever lived. And when she realized that Elijah, the guy I'm talking about that ultimately caused the death of her 400 prophets, she was livid. She said, I'm going to hunt you down. So he takes off running.
[00:17:44] This is all in the Bible. He takes off running and he runs and he, and he's so depressed. He sits under a tree and he goes, Oh God, I just want to die, which he didn't want to die because he wanted to die. She'd had done that for him. So. He's just depressed. And then God says, [00:18:00] Elijah wants you to get up and I want you to go somewhere.
[00:18:02] In fact, let me just read to you. Okay. And again, now you've got the setting. Let me, so first Kings 19. All right. The Lord said, go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the Lord for the Lord is about to pass by. Okay. All right. All right. Then a great and powerful wind. Tore the mountains apart.
[00:18:23] Look at this. Look at this.
[00:18:27] And shattered the rocks before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind,
[00:18:34] but the Lord is not in the wind. After the wind, there was an earthquake that the tectonic plates began to shift and it was violent. The noise was everywhere, but the Lord was not in the earthquake. After the earthquake came a fire, a blaze, it was, it was unbelievable. It was an Inferno, but the Lord was not in the fire.
[00:18:54] And after the fire came a gentle whisper. When [00:19:00] Elijah heard it, he pulled his cloak over his face and he went out and he stood at the mouth of the cave. Then a voice said to him, what are you doing here, Elijah? Who's that voice, voice of God through the spirit gentle whisper. So. You want to know how God leads.
[00:19:23] You have the spirit of the spirit of God living inside of you. If you're a believer, just a gentle whisper. I always describe it as kind of the, I don't know, just that, that pull on your heart, that little push. Sometimes you need that little poke. Sometimes you need to have that little press. You just kinda feel that press you're like going God, I feel it.
[00:19:49] Yeah, I got it. It is not violent. A I gotta go! It's just a gentle, a gentle touch of God through his whisper of God. [00:20:00] Um, well doesn't God speak in an audible voices? This is one of the things that. Guys listen to me. All right. I have walked with Christ for 40 plus years of my life. I have never, ever heard the voice of God.
[00:20:14] Never once. Never once. Never God said, and I heard, and I did. I say this to tell you many of you would go, I don't feel close to God because I never heard his voice. I'm not going to say God, doesn't speak in an audible voice any more, how would I be qualified to say that he's never spoken to me? I can make that statement.
[00:20:33] I don't know that he does or doesn't, he's not done it to me. And he's probably not done it to you, but to say, I've not heard from God, I'd be lying through my teeth. I feel this, I feel this. And I feel the pull. I feel the push. I feel the poke. I get it. I get the press, the press of God on my heart. So I know God speaks.
[00:20:54] It's just not in an audible voice, never going to contradict scripture. Makes sure we're clear [00:21:00] because you know what a lot of times we want to do is we want to contradict scripture and believe that God's going to change his mind. He's not going to change his mind. He's going to give you clarity on what he wasn't specific about in the revealed word.
[00:21:12] Here's a third way that he's going to communicate. He's going to communicate through godly counsel. Godly counsel is when you're doing something and God sends somebody to get into a divine appointment calls, getting a conversation with you. David committed the sin with Bathsheba and he was thinking he was getting away with it.
[00:21:28] And God sent a guy named Nathan, who he clued Nathan. And he says, you go talk to him and you go straighten him out. And so he goes, it has this conversation. You know what your mind is so powerful. That you can convince yourself to do anything you want to do. You could just convince yourself. I, you know, my wife and I were, we're going to break up because God wanted me to be happy and hey, I'm not happy.
[00:21:48] So I met the secretary and so I'm going to go. And so we're hooking up and we're going to go do a thing and then listen, folks, that's not from God. That's not a gentle whisper from God. It's a direct contradiction of his word. [00:22:00] Here's what you're doing is you're convincing yourself, but you know how you can prevent things like that.
[00:22:04] Godly counsel. To God, let me show you a couple of Proverbs here. Here we go. Without good direction. People lose their way. The more wise counsel you follow the better, your chances. Godly counsel surrounding you will come alongside you and go, Hey pal, listen, I know what you're doing and it's wrong. The way of fools seem right to them.
[00:22:24] But the wise listen to advice. God communicates through through godly people. Here's another way God communicates. I think, through, through, through a dream or a vision. Now we, if we have time, we would try to separate, what's a vision. What's a dream. Let's just say it. Some, it's some kind of a supernatural kind of a surreal, like, and again, we want to go, God can't communicate like in, in, in dreams.
[00:22:49] Okay. I want to tell you something. Um, the God told Joseph, the earthly father of Judah, not to [00:23:00] return to Israel to return because Herod was seeking to kill him. How did come? It came in a dream. If you read acts chapter 16, Paul is in a dream, a vision of a man from -- in a dream, a vision of a man from Macedonia.
[00:23:16] Come over here. It's when it left Asia and went into Europe, the gospel, it came in a dream. I cannot tell you honestly, how many times I have been in a dilemma. Being a leader of a church going, I don't know the pandemic. Okay, seriously, right now it's like, God, I don't know what to do. And I've got to make hard decisions and they're difficult and I'll go to bed and I'm all kind of ancy.
[00:23:42] And you know, I got angst in my heart and I'll be praying God, just, uh, you know, and I'll fall asleep trying to sort it out with God. Church I can't tell you how many times this has happened to me over my lifetime, where I will have a dream. And I will wake up and I will be crystal clear [00:24:00] on what I need to do will not contradict scripture, but I will have heard from God, God communicates.
[00:24:05] Well is that it? Is that the only way? No, I think there's other ways I don't have time to go, but here's another one. Just through remarkable circumstances. You have to have stuff happening in your life where you go. There's just like no way this could be happening. Like, like when I met Lisa. The woman I've been married to for over 40 years when I met her, there is no way people want to say, it's just a circumstance.
[00:24:28] I'm going. There's no way you can't align these circumstances where all of this would work out. Exactly how this worked out. You start looking at the circumstances you go, this is too bizarre. This cannot just be by chance. And God's going, I'm trying to get your attention, Cal. Trying to get your attention. I've been praying quietly for God to bring a person into my life.
[00:24:49] I've been praying. I'm going, God, I have, I'm carrying a burden on something. I go, God, I need somebody to carry this with me. And I met a guy through our church here. [00:25:00] I met a guy who's actually an African man from Benin Africa. And I met him here and I got to talking to him and I'm like going, Oh my goodness.
[00:25:13] Well, let me say this. He's from Benin Africa. He's an African man. And his name is Peter. How many of, you know, African men from Benin Africa named Peter. Okay. That's bizarre. Let's just start there. And then from there, the burden of my heart is the burden on his heart. What's on his heart is coming onto my heart and he, and I've been doing some ministry things together, and God has just been showing up big time folks pay attention, so.
[00:25:40] Okay. All right. All right. So does God still speak? Yes. How does he speak? We talked about some of those ways. How do I listen? How do I listen? I want to tell you a story. I learned this a long time ago. I've never forgotten it. It was about, uh, a man, two childhood friends. The man grew up to be a banker, ended up on wall street in New York.
[00:25:58] And his [00:26:00] friend was a native American man and grew into a native American man that were boys when they met. But anyway, The banker invited the native American man. When did you come to New York? Let me kind of show you my world. And so, uh, okay. So he agreed to, I flew to New York and ended up on wall street with him and doing the banking thing.
[00:26:16] And they said, let's go to lunch. So they decided to walk to lunch. And as the banker and the native American men were walking down the street, the native American stopped him. He says, you need to hear it. And the banker goes hear what? Can you hear it hear what? The cricket, the what? The cricket. Can you hear the cricket?
[00:26:35] He goes, you can't hear these sirens and horns and phones and all kinds of commotion and cars. And he goes, there's no way you're hearing a cricket. He goes, Oh my friend, I'm hearing to cricket. He goes, I guarantee you're not. He goes, I guarantee I am. He said, wait a minute, caught this head. He said, follow me carefully.
[00:26:54] Crosses the street, walks up the sidewalk, a few steps bends down at a planter, flips over a piece of bark and sure enough, there's [00:27:00] a cricket. And the guy goes, how in the world did you hear that? And then, uh, the native American said, Hey, do you have any change in your pocket? What you get any change, you know, pulls off some change cause kinda, kinda borrow it.
[00:27:13] What's the change in the, in the hand of the native American. And he just holds it up high and he just drops it on the sidewalk. All of a sudden, all the noise around stops and every head turns. And then the native American looks at the banker and it says, it just all depends on what you're listening for. Heard the voice of God lately? Understand this church.
[00:27:37] God wants to be in a conversation with you. He wants you to speak to him. He wants to be spoken to by you. Prayer is just simply, you're sharing your heart with him. Expression impression. That's prayer. God, I just, I want to, and then God's goes, yeah.
[00:27:54] Are you close enough to God where you recognize his voice? [00:28:00] Like you just know that's God, I know God. Yeah, I got it. I hear ya. Jesus gave this great little picture of being a shepherd. You, you might remember this, John 10, the gatekeeper opens the gate for him and the sheep. Listen to his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out.
[00:28:17] When he has brought out all of his own, he goes on ahead of them and his sheep follow him because they know his voice only his voice. They will never follow a stranger. In fact, they will run away from him because they do not recognize a stranger's voice. Do you recognize the voice of God? When I first became a believer at that camp, we talked about about three weeks ago now they taught me something.
[00:28:46] Uh, in my very first week of being a believer, they talk, they talk as in, was an ancient practice, passed down by a guy named brother Lawrence called practicing the presence of God. And it's the idea that all you do is you just, you get yourself open, you open [00:29:00] your Bible and you sit there and you quietly sit before God, and you let God speak to you.
[00:29:06] However, however, he will. You open your word and you open your heart. You don't listen. For what you're supposed to go do. It's not, it's not a checklist. You're listening. God, give me the checklist. It it's, it's the person. And he wants you to become, it's where he wants to talk to you about character issues in your life and wants to just talk to you about where you're headed.
[00:29:29] And, um, and yet here's what I can tell you I've learned. And this is, this is the big idea of this message folks. To hear God's voice, you must choose to be present with God. It's a choice. You got to choose to be present with God,
[00:29:49] Not for what I can go do, but who you want me to be? Dallas Willard said this, an obsession merely with doing all of God's commands may be the very thing that rules out being [00:30:00] the kind of person he calls us to be.
[00:30:07] One of my favorite Psalms is Psalm five. There's a verse in Psalm five. It just so resonates with my heart. I want to share it with you. In the morning Lord, you hear my voice. In the morning I lay my request before you expression and wait expectantly not that you're going to answer that. No, no, no. That you're going to speak back to me and God.
[00:30:28] I just want to hear what you have to say. God's going to show up. Now I'm going to close this, measure it by telling you this. When Samuel who was one of the greatest men in the old Testament was a little boy, God began to speak to him, but he didn't recognize the voice of God who was too little. So he went to an older man, a mentor named Eli, and he was explaining to Eli, keep hearing this.
[00:30:49] And then Eli goes, Oh, finally figures out. It's the voice of God. And Eli taught him to say, whenever, hears that voice, Lord, your servant [00:31:00] is listening. Lord your servant is listening. Okay. The problem for so many of us is, um, we don't listen because it's so loud out. Mother Theresa says, sometimes we think we don't hear God's voice.
[00:31:19] Not because he isn't speaking, but because we have the volume of the world will way too loud. How comfortable are you with silence? God open my ears right now. God helped me to hear I'm just gonna be still. I'm just gonna be quiet. Um, to hear God's voice, you must practice the present, being present in the moment with God.
[00:31:52] So we're going to do something different. I'm going to stop talking and we're going to just sit here. For 45 seconds. [00:32:00] Silence can feel like an eternity when it's not your friend. So let's just sit here in silence, and then we're going to follow this with something you don't want to miss. It's a song that addresses the problem and what we do about it. [00:34:00] [00:33:00] [silence] [00:36:00]