Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Listening Prayer

A "Listening Prayer" caught my eye in the journal I'm using. It's by A. W. Tozer, one of my favorite theologians. He said to . . .

Retire from the world each day to some private spot . . .

Stay in the secret place till the surrounding noises begin

to fade out of your heart and a sense of God's presence envelopes you . . .

Listen for the inward Voice till you learn

to recognize it . . . Learn to pray inwardly every moment.

What does it take to retire from the world each day to a private spot? For me, it took disciplined Bible Study to get me started. Now that I'm hooked on listening for the inward Voice, even though it's a fight some times, it's hard for me to go a day without retreating into God's presence.

Thinking about the wonderful, countless benefits of disciplined study makes me wonder why discipline gets such a bad rap. Is it because we don't like being forced? Or are we just lazy? It's a little of both, don't you think? On top of being stubborn and like sloths, we humans can conjure up more excuses as to why we don't have time for God than a pine tree has needles.

But if we do take the time to listen for His still small voice, the Holy Spirit will step in and teach us how to recognize God's voice and pray inwardly every moment. He promises to guide us into all truth and will bring glory to Jesus by taking what is Jesus' and make it known to us (John 16:12-15). In that private place there are unthinkable treasures to be found. Won't you join me as I fight off all of the excuses and distractions and carve out some time for listening prayer today?
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