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Monday, March 2, 2015

Hurry is a Barrier to Me Hearing God

In review of Luke 8:13 it says, “The seeds on the rocky soil represent those who hear the message and receive it with joy. But since they don’t have deep roots, they believe for a while, then they fall away when they face temptation.”

Bottom Line:
It doesn’t do much good to listen with enthusiasm, but never let it sink in and take root. You’ll only believe until you are tempted or it becomes inconvenient, then you fall away.

What this means to me:
Like seeds that fell on the rocky soil, its much like me enjoying and listening to the message and knowing that it is true, but never really allowing it to take root and grow. Since its not taken root, I’ll believe for a while, however when the time of testing comes, I fail.

Its important for me to cultivate an open mind so that I can hear from God. To do so, I’ve got to allocate time to listen. This means I’ve got to slow down and be quiet. I need to keep it in my schedule so I’ll have time to hear God speak.

The first barrier to hearing God speak is resistance. But the second barrier to hearing God is hurry. When I live a hurried life, God gets shuffled to the sidelines. I say, “God, I want to hear from you. But hurry up! I’ve only got five minutes!”

God wants more than my leftovers and spare moments. He wants to be the center of my life. The way that I prove he’s the center, is by me allocating time to listen.

Jesus says in Luke 8:6, “Other seed fell among rocks. It began to grow, but the plant soon wilted and died for lack of moisture” (NLT).

What I understand is that Israel was not a very fertile country; most of it is a thin layer of topsoil over bedrock of limestone. So If you plant something on this rocky soil, the seed will sprout — but it can’t get deep roots, so it withers and dies.

In Luke 8:13 Jesus explains that this kind of soil represents “those who hear the message and receive it with joy. But since they don’t have deep roots, they believe for a while, then they fall away when they face temptation.” The shallow soil represents a superficial mind.

I know there are times when I only react superficially to God’s Word. I can get excited and emotional. But I don’t let God’s Word sink into the bedrock of my being, so there’s no real change.

There are two practical ways to develop spiritual roots.

First is for me to continue in scheduling my daily quiet time with God. It is the 10 or 15 minutes before I leave for work and the 1/2 hour to 45 min. I spend at Starbucks before heading into work. During the first part (before leaving for work), I sit, being quiet, listen to God, and asking him, “Is there anything you want to say to me through your Word?” Then praying. Secondly I like to take something for “Daily Hope” from Rick Warren, as a springboard for my further digging into God’s word to review while I’m enjoying some coffee at Starbucks before heading into work

Another thing I can do is to join or be part of a weekly small group. This is where God can speak to me through others as we discuss and interact and learn from each other. Hebrews 10:25 says, “Let us not give up the habit of meeting together .... Instead, let us encourage one another” (TEV).

Both of these habits will require me to be continually intentional with my time. When I allocate part of my day for a quiet time and part of my week for small group, I can illustrate to God that I want him at the center of my life and that I want to hear from him.

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