Noise and visual pollution fill our lives. The endless droning of noise bombards our ears while our eyes are forced to contend with unending visual stimulation. With this cacophony of a hyper-sensory onslaught, is it any wonder that so many people struggle to hear the voice of God or see His face in their everyday lives? What can we do to change this? Please read more….
Did you know that sound torture is a type of psychological warfare used to break the will of military prisoners? The use of loud heavy metal music playing over and over for hours causes brain functions to slow down and the wills of prisoners to break.
Perhaps, unknowingly, we are all being subjected to sound and visual torture. We have so much “Hey Siri,” “Hey Google” or “Hey Alexa” in our lives that we may have lost focus on the importance of saying “Hey God” and then listening for His reply. Take a quick test. In the last 24 hours, how many times did you say, “Hey Siri” or “Hey Google” or conduct a Google search? Now compare that to how many times you spoke to God or searched through His word in Scripture? What did you discover?
Have iPads, iPhones, Macs, Dells, Android devices, and mega sized TVs drowned out the sound of God’s voice in your life? How many advertisements are we all subjected to each day? We see ads on every internet search. We get hundreds of junk emails marketing just about everything. We drive down the road and see billboard after billboard. We listen to commercials on the radio, on Pandora and on most other video links on the internet.
What message are these advertisements sending us? They all tell us we need something. We need whiter teeth, more hair, less dandruff, better deodorant, a different diet, or a faster car. We need to buy more gold and silver. We need….we need….we need….and on and on it goes.
Let me be clear, there is only one thing that we all need. We all need more God in our lives. He alone fills the voids in life that we often must contend with. Sadly, this is the one commercial we never hear.
All of this sensory pollution blackens out the skies of our life. It chokes out the oxygen of God that we need to breathe, much like the smoke stacks of the industrial fifties that blackened out the skies of our cities. Eventually, the government took action to clean up this pollution. In some areas, more action is still needed.
What about the pollution in our life? Is it high time we take action to eliminate some of the visual and sound pollution that blocks out God from our life? When was the last time you sat in a place of solitude, away from the hustle and bustle of the world, for several days or even a week solely for the purpose of hearing God?
The week leading up to Thanksgiving seven years ago forever changed my life. I had been encouraged to get away on a silent retreat. I did so in November of 2011. Once I finally shut up, tuned out, and got away to a quiet place, God had a lot to say to me. I heard His voice in my heart. I heard Him in a way that was not possible, surrounded by the incessant white noise of everyday life. Have you ever been on a silent retreat?
The song, I HEARD THE VOICE OF JESUS SAY, by Horatius Bonar (1846) gives us these words:
I heard the voice of Jesus say,
Come unto Me and rest;
Lay down, O weary one lay down,
Your head upon My breast.
I came to Jesus as I was,
So weary, worn and sad;
I found in Him my resting place,
And He has made me glad.
I can honestly say that on my silent retreat I came to Jesus and He truly did make me glad. I am confident that if you find a place of silence and listen for His voice He will do the same for you.
We are coming up on a very busy time of year. We are about to be overwhelmed by Christmas advertisements and never ending Christmas music. We must be careful that these don’t block out God’s voice. On this, the seventh anniversary of my eight day silent retreat at the House of Prayer in Clearwater, Florida, I want to encourage all of you to find a quiet place, away from life’s distractions so that you can give God the opportunity to speak to you.
If we want to hear the voice of God and truly experience His grace… we must give Him some silence in our life so that He can speak to our hearts! If we do, we might be amazed at what He has to say.
Heavenly Father I raise my voice in song to you with these words: Amazing grace how sweet the sound that saved a wretch like me. I once was lost but now am found was blind but now I see. Amen!
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