Can You Hear Me Now?

by APC on February 25, 2015

Remember the early cell phone days when over half of a conversation consisted of asking the other party, “Can you hear me now?” Depending upon the cell phone carrier, this could be a reality for many even today!

When we talk on the phone, or even in person, our goal is to ensure the other person can hear us! We want them to listen intently to what we have to say, hang on our every word, and—as we may secretly hope—ask to hear more of our “thought-provoking” comments.

Statistics show that an average person spends approximately 80% of his/her waking hours communicating: writing, reading, speaking, and listening. When it comes to time allocation for these communicative actions, listening falls into the shallow part of the pool. We spend more time jabbering than we do listening to what others have to say.

Our listening tendencies are consistent across every communication venue we participate in on a day-to-day basis. This includes our intimate prayer time with God.

When we approach the throne of God in prayer, we bring numerous petitions before Him daily as Philippians 4:6 instructs. During prayer, we constantly ask the Lord, Will You answer my questions, Will You supply my need, or in a general sense, Can You hear me? We talk, cry, plead, make intercession, etc. Before we know it, we’ve spent an hour or more on our knees and only heard one voice—ours.

We have a tendency to forget the purpose of prayer. Prayer is available for many reasons, but a key function is to allow us to communicate with God. Part of communicating involves listening; it’s not 100% dictation—especially on our end! Prayer is a time for us to not only make our requests known to God, but a time for us to hear from God—this may even include answers to the questions we’ve already asked Him! God is asking us, Can you hear me now?

Proverbs 8:34 notes, Blessed is the man that heareth me, watching daily at my gates, waiting at the posts of my doors (KJV). God wants to bless His children with words of encouragement, wisdom, direction, and sometimes correction (okay, maybe a lot of correction. We’re humans, right?). But, unless we seek out His voice, await His words, and make room for a voice (God’s) that’s not our own, we can’t and won’t be blessed.

Hearing God when we pray may be difficult because we don’t know how God’s voice sounds. This is because we don’t listen for it, and therefore, don’t hear it enough. John 10:27 tells us, My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me (KJV). We need to be familiar enough with God’s voice that when He speaks, we can stop, hear Him, and follow Him.

Best friends note a key attribute in their relationship—the ability to talk to the other person about anything and everything. Both people find the relationship mutually fulfilling because as much as they get to talk, they also get to listen. Jesus is a friend that sticks closer than a brother (Proverbs 18:24)—the best friend we could ever have. In order to get close to Him, we need to listen. The next time you pray, stop asking God if He can hear you now. Can you hear Him now?