I was reading the other day in Genesis and came across this verse.
"The Lord said to Abram after Lot had parted from him, 'Lift up your eyes from where you are and look north, south, east and west. All the land that you see I will give to you and your offspring forever.'" Gen. 13:14-15
There is so much I could pull from that verse. Thoughts immediately go to God's incredible promise and His amazing purpose for Abram as the father of a chosen nation. But on this day, I was thinking something else.
I was thinking about all of the places in the Old Testament in particular where it is kind of matter-of-fact-ly stated 'and God said to (fill in the blank)'. It always intrigues me when I read the Old Testament at how easily these characters heard the voice of God. And I wonder, was it really that simple? Did Abram audibly hear God's voice? Or was it more of an impression? Or a crystal clear thought? Or a feeling?
The clarity of the words that follow here would indicate an actual voice. And not just in this text, but in many texts throughout Scripture. Hardly seems fair, does it?
I long for that kind of clarity in my exchanges with God. Oh, I know that He hears me and determines my thoughts even before I have a chance to speak them. But when it comes to hearing Him...it would be so awesome if he would just lean forward a little and speak into the microphone or send me an email with an audio download for my iPhone. But instead, I don't hear an audible voice. I'm not totally certain that I ever have. I hear about people who say they've actually, physically heard God speak to them and I believe them...and secretly envy them. But not me. Instead, I have to sort through all my personal thoughts and feelings and pre-determined ideas and the emotional baggage I carry to determine what is just me over-thinking a situation and what is actually God trying to speak to me.
Maybe there is an intentional method in this from God's perspective. Maybe He wants me to be self-aware enough that I can sort through all that other junk and really empty myself of me so I can clearly hear his voice. Perhaps He wants to drive me back to His Word to search for my answers and back to my knees to really pray and seek His face for direction. I think that's probably it.
So I pray today. Lord thank You for all of the ways that You do speak to me. Help me daily to sift through all the junk that's just me and to get to the good stuff that you are saying to me. And by all means, if you feel so led, speak into the mic!