So, my 6 year old daughter has always been funny about her ears.
It’s been a struggle ever since I can remember trying to clean her ears using Q-tips. She’s gotten a lot better about it as she’s gotten older, but she used to freak out anytime I’d stick one in her ear.
I could never understand why she would get so upset because I made sure not to stick it in too far and I was always gentle, so I knew it wasn’t hurting her. In the midst of her freaking out, she’d always say, “Mommy, I can’t hear you!” I’d ask her questions and she’d answer me, so I knew she could hear me just fine. I just couldn’t figure out why it upset her so much.
Loud noises have also proved to be bothersome to her, especially as she’s gotten older. There have never been any concerns from her pediatrician about her ears, so I just chalked it up to her being your typical toddler/preschooler with an irrational fear about her ears.
Well, after several years of wrestling with this issue, I’ve finally come to realize why these things have bothered her so much — and surprisingly, it’s not because she’s scared of them!
My husband was installing new flooring in our guest bathroom a while back and had to use a few power tools that were kind of loud. Normally, I’d have my daughter go in her bedroom to get away from the noise because I know it bothers her, but for some reason, she wanted to stay near us so that she could be our “helper” that day. She bravely stuck around — hands over her ears, her eyes glued to mine.
As one of the tools was buzzing away loudly, she finally broke down and yelled to me in a frantic voice, “Mommy, I can’t hear you! I can’t hear your voice!”
I tried to assure her that I was right there with her and she didn’t need to be afraid — but for some reason, not being able to hear my voice caused great anxiety to well up within her little heart.
Once my husband was finished using his tools, I asked her why not being able to hear me was so scary for her and she said, “Because, I need to hear your voice!”
It all finally clicked for me in that moment.
The Q-tips. The loud noises.
These things would keep her from being able to hear her momma’s voice loud and clear — and that’s just not a place she ever wants to be in! I couldn’t help but get teary-eyed after she told me that.
The funny thing is that God, as He always does, spoke to my heart through this situation, and asked me a simple question:
“When was the last time you got that upset because you couldn’t hear My voice?”
It’s so easy to go through this life sometimes, totally oblivious to the fact that God has things He wants to say to each of His children. If we’re not careful, we can allow the noise of this world and the distractions that go on all around us to drown out His voice.
How many times have we faced a crisis or needed some direction or guidance, yet God seemed so distant — so silent? Could it be that God wasn’t actually silent, we just couldn’t hear Him over all of the other voices and noises in our lives that were screaming for our attention?
Our family, our friends — the people in our lives. Our job. Our circumstances. Our hobbies. Our responsibilities. Our finances. Our health. Our sin.
These are some things that can easily distract us and keep us from hearing from our heavenly Father. If we become so consumed and occupied by any of these things, and we don’t take the time to be still and to quiet ourselves before the Lord on a daily basis, it’s going to be extremely difficult for us to hear His voice.
And that should break our hearts!
It should cause us to be just like my daughter, frantically calling out to God, “Father, I can’t hear You! I can’t hear Your voice!”
And yet, how often do we coast through life, not giving a second thought to the fact that we haven’t heard from Him in days, weeks, or even years? Not even realizing that He has the answer to every problem we could ever face — if we’d just take the time to listen for His still, small voice.
So often, we look to other people and other things for what only He can give us! As His children, we need to hear His voice. He longs to speak life, to speak truth, to speak peace and joy and hope into each and every one of our hearts. He has important assignments and messages He needs to relay to us.
But God doesn’t scream over all of the other voices — He doesn’t become louder than all of the distractions in our lives so that we can hear Him. And honestly, He shouldn’t have to.
As His sheep, we ought to be listening intently for His voice, as if our lives depend on it — because, in reality, they do.
If we’re not listening, He will usually send gentle nudges to get our attention, as He patiently waits for us to turn our attention back towards Him. And if we still don’t listen, often times He’ll allow bad things to happen in our lives in order to bring us back to a place of humility and repentance.
Have you heard God speaking to you lately? If not, let me encourage you to take some time to rid yourself of the distractions and the things in your life that are drowning out His voice and keeping you from hearing from Him.
Be still in His presence. Quiet yourself and your surroundings and get alone with your Creator. Get in His Word.
If we never give God the opportunity to speak, how can we expect to hear Him?
Psalm 95:6-8 ESV says, “Oh come, let us worship and bow down; let us kneel before the LORD our Maker. For He is our God, and we are the people of His pasture, and the sheep of His hand. Today, if you will hear His voice: “Do not harden your hearts..”
Hearing from the Lord requires a heart that is humble before Him—a heart that is eager and ready to hear what He has to say. If we don’t listen for His voice and we’re not willing to do whatever it is that He asks us to do, our hearts can become hardened towards Him, and pretty soon, His voice will become quieter and quieter, until we can no longer hear it.
Don’t let that be you today, my friend!
God is so good and anything He has to say is worth dropping everything we’re doing and listening as closely as we possibly can. I can assure you, His voice is the sweetest voice we’ll ever hear — and one that I hope would be sorely missed if we haven’t heard it in a while.
Position yourself to hear from God. He has things He wants to say.
Featured Image by Allef Vinicius