I don't know about you, but I need a wisdom that doesn't come from me. I need insight and discernment that can only come from God. The Bible says in 1 Corinthians 2 that "...the Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God. For who among men knows the thoughts of a man except the man's spirit within him? In the same way no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. We have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God has freely given us." I need understanding that can only come from the Spirit!
Sometimes this understanding and insight comes specifically through the scriptures, God's inspired word. Other times it comes through prayer and time spent alone in quiet with God. And it even comes through the gentle admonishment from a friend or trusted loved one. Over the years, I've noticed that for me personally, when God really wants to get my attention about something, a certain theme or word will come up continually, in all different areas of my life. Over the past week or two, this has been happening. A very specific word keeps coming up in my life.
That word is LISTEN.
Through my bible studies. In my business. At home with my family.
Give one's attention to a sound.
Take notice and act on what someone says.
Make and effort...be alert and ready...to hear something.
Pay attention to someone in order to hear what is being said.
It can be so difficult to actually listen. I often catch myself trying to formulate a response before the other person is even finished talking. And I wonder how often I do this to God. How often do I respond without taking the time to really listen?
Listening is ACTIVE. It takes INTENTION. And ATTENTION.
I would even say that Listening takes SUBMISSION.
I believe that if we really take the time to listen, if we lay aside our agendas and actively attempt to understand, that we will be given insight and discernment into the heart of the matter...into the heart of the person...into the heart of God. And through listening, the Holy Spirit WILL lead.
*This post is inspired by the I Believe study through IF:Equip.