Can You Hear Me Now?
Everyone who has ears, let them hear!
A repeated phrase we hear from Jesus is, “let the person who has ears, hear.” Jesus used this phrase when he explained some aspect of God’s kingdom, often when he told a story to make a point (parables). Jesus wanted his people not only to hear the sound coming out of his mouth, but to understand the message he was communicating. While creating space in our lives to listen to Jesus is critical, so is understanding what he says.
While there may be several obstacles to our truly hearing what Jesus has to say, three things which block our ability to hear quickly come to mind; pride, fear and ambition. Pride is the attitude that tells us we can handle it on our own: “I’ve got this!” As long as I delude myself into thinking I am in complete control, I will not be able to hear. Fear tells us that it would be too painful or cost too much to take Jesus’ words to heart. Remember, God does not change. So if there is a problem, then the implication is I am the one who is going to have to make a change. At times we don’t just get into ruts, we move in and furnish them. I know you can’t spell “change” with four letters, but we often act as though it’s a four letter word. Finally, our own self-centered ambition can keep us from hearing Jesus. There are days when I want what I want when I want it! It does not matter if what I want is a material thing or recognition from others, when personal gain is my main goal, my ability to hear Jesus is greatly diminished.
Not unlike Newtons 3rd law of motion that states for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction, the three blocks above have corresponding opposites which allow us to hear: humility, courage to trust and submission. In order to listen to and follow the directions of someone else, I first have to admit I do not know the answer. It is much less common today with GPS, but there have been times when I have wasted time driving around lost because I did not stop and ask for directions. Until I humbled myself enough to ask another for help, I was doomed to stay lost. Humility allows us to say “I don’t know and I know that I don’t know.” Trust allows us to face the fear and we have to have courage to trust. There is now way to entirely eradicate fear from our live, but we can walk through those fears if we will trust. Also, often when we get through whatever was cause the fear, we find it was not nearly as bad as we thought it would be. Finally, we can submit to doing this thing called life God’s way through submission. There are really only two options to power our way through life, we can attempt to live through human will or by God’s will. When I submit to Jesus I am declaring that I am incapable of controlling my life and the lives of people around me.
I do hope that you have ears to hear what Jesus has to say. I think he is probably asking you and me, Can you hear me now?