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What helps you hear God?

May 22, 2010

I am looking forward to the French Open which starts tomorrow night (my time) and it started me thinking about training. Tennis players put in a lot of effort to be physically fit for the two week competition and we often use physical training as an analogy for spiritual disciplines, such as Bible reading, studying, praying, fasting, meditating etc. While analogies are helpful and useful, at some point they usually break down.

Tennis players rely on doing certain exercises, certain drills, and certain work outs to get the results they want. However, spiritually we can’t rely on a certain spiritual discipline to get us the result we want. The purpose of a spiritual discipline is to put us before God so He can work on us. So it is not about us becoming proficient at a particular discipline, but rather about being open before God. It is not about which particular disciplines we are good at, but rather which ones help us to hear God.

I’m not dismissing the value of spiritual disciplines but it is important not to get so caught up in the practice of a discipline that we forget why we are doing it. We need to remember that it is God who sanctifies us, “May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through” (1 Thessalonians 5:23). So it is not so important which spiritual disciplines we embrace because, unlike the training tennis players do, any spiritual discipline, done with the right attitude, can achieve the purpose of putting us before God.

by Susan Barnes
30

Susan Barnes

~ writer of insightful posts about God and faith

30 thoughts on “What helps you hear God?”

  1. I do believe it is a personal thing to have a favorite or most effective way to hear from God. Personally, I find that always being aware of God's presence helps me see God working when otherwise I would have missed Him.
    I do find that quiet, music, and being outdoors helps me get in touch with God too.

  2. I do believe it is a personal thing to have a favorite or most effective way to hear from God. Personally, I find that always being aware of God's presence helps me see God working when otherwise I would have missed Him.
    I do find that quiet, music, and being outdoors helps me get in touch with God too.

  3. Perhaps we don't emphasis enough that it is a personal thing to discover the best way you can put yourself before God.

    Though I think for all of us God explains Himself to us through His word.

  4. Perhaps we don't emphasis enough that it is a personal thing to discover the best way you can put yourself before God.

    Though I think for all of us God explains Himself to us through His word.

  5. Thanks Leroy for dropping by. I've been away for a few days otherwise I would have got back here sooner.

    In the circles I move in it is common to talk about hearing from God. Perhaps it sounds arrogrant? A mere mortal like me believing I can communicate with the God who made everything out of nothing? As if a God would be interested in communicating with me.

    Nevertheless I do believe it. I believe that God loves so much and desires a relationship with us so much that He gave up his son to make that communication possible.

    It's a risk to believe, that's why it is called faith, and some will think me delusional. So be it.

  6. Thanks Leroy for dropping by. I've been away for a few days otherwise I would have got back here sooner.

    In the circles I move in it is common to talk about hearing from God. Perhaps it sounds arrogrant? A mere mortal like me believing I can communicate with the God who made everything out of nothing? As if a God would be interested in communicating with me.

    Nevertheless I do believe it. I believe that God loves so much and desires a relationship with us so much that He gave up his son to make that communication possible.

    It's a risk to believe, that's why it is called faith, and some will think me delusional. So be it.

  7. Certainly I have faith, but I’m not quite sure why you think I need faith. So perhaps this is the WIIFM (What's In It For Me) question?

    Not sure if you are familiar with Job, probably the oldest story in the Bible. He was also accused of only believing in God for what he got out of it. But Job decided to continue believing in God even when there was no earthly reason to. The point being, faith isn’t about what I get out of it, but rather it is an invitation to be involved in the purposes and plans of God. The list of Christian martyrs is testament to true faith being costly, risky, and altogether uncomfortable.

  8. Certainly I have faith, but I’m not quite sure why you think I need faith. So perhaps this is the WIIFM (What's In It For Me) question?

    Not sure if you are familiar with Job, probably the oldest story in the Bible. He was also accused of only believing in God for what he got out of it. But Job decided to continue believing in God even when there was no earthly reason to. The point being, faith isn’t about what I get out of it, but rather it is an invitation to be involved in the purposes and plans of God. The list of Christian martyrs is testament to true faith being costly, risky, and altogether uncomfortable.

  9. Susan, you have done what people of faith always do. They hold out their faith as being the cause of their faith.
    One tome of dubious origins with selective texts, just one. And an invisible entity which has never provided any empirical evidence of it's existence, ever.
    Yet you choose to believe that there is a god, that the bible tells us all we need to know.
    I'm constantly amazed that sane, rational people can do so. How do you?

  10. Susan, you have done what people of faith always do. They hold out their faith as being the cause of their faith.
    One tome of dubious origins with selective texts, just one. And an invisible entity which has never provided any empirical evidence of it's existence, ever.
    Yet you choose to believe that there is a god, that the bible tells us all we need to know.
    I'm constantly amazed that sane, rational people can do so. How do you?

  11. And I’m constantly amazed that sane, rational people rely only on empirical evidence and totally dismiss historical evidence. Much of what we believe about the world is based on historical evidence that cannot be proved empirically. For example we believe Homer wrote two famous epic poems, The Iliad and The Odyssey based on historical evidence. We believe Christopher Columbus discovered America based on historical evidence. Likewise there is much historical evidence (outside the Bible) for Jesus' life and death. There is also much historical evidence about the origins of the Bible.

    You seem well versed in what I believe Leroy, and likewise I'm familiar with your arguments, so I wonder the value of continuing this discussion. I have enjoyed your visits, thanks for dropping by. I think it is now time we agree to disagree and move on.

  12. And I’m constantly amazed that sane, rational people rely only on empirical evidence and totally dismiss historical evidence. Much of what we believe about the world is based on historical evidence that cannot be proved empirically. For example we believe Homer wrote two famous epic poems, The Iliad and The Odyssey based on historical evidence. We believe Christopher Columbus discovered America based on historical evidence. Likewise there is much historical evidence (outside the Bible) for Jesus' life and death. There is also much historical evidence about the origins of the Bible.

    You seem well versed in what I believe Leroy, and likewise I'm familiar with your arguments, so I wonder the value of continuing this discussion. I have enjoyed your visits, thanks for dropping by. I think it is now time we agree to disagree and move on.

  13. Ah, so you flee when the basis for your faith is challenged?

    You are obviously aware that the balance of evidence is vastly against your premise.

    So why do you choose to be one those who do the 'la la' thing rather than face reality?

  14. Ah, so you flee when the basis for your faith is challenged?

    You are obviously aware that the balance of evidence is vastly against your premise.

    So why do you choose to be one those who do the 'la la' thing rather than face reality?

  15. I felt I made myself perfectly clear in my last comment as to why I was finishing this conversation.

    I deleted your comment because of the historical inaccuracies it contained and will continue to delete your future comments.

    I’m sure that there are other Christian bloggers with religious blogs on Technorati that you can visit, if that’s the way you like to spend your time.

    Conversation over,
    Good-bye Leroy.

  16. I felt I made myself perfectly clear in my last comment as to why I was finishing this conversation.

    I deleted your comment because of the historical inaccuracies it contained and will continue to delete your future comments.

    I’m sure that there are other Christian bloggers with religious blogs on Technorati that you can visit, if that’s the way you like to spend your time.

    Conversation over,
    Good-bye Leroy.

  17. I have written here what I call my three strikes and you're out policy which has becoming more formalized as a result of this post.

  18. I have written here what I call my three strikes and you're out policy which has becoming more formalized as a result of this post.

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