When I first gave my life to Christ and accepted Him as my Lord and Savior, I learned to hear His voice and to respond to it. I was in a perfect place to receive God. I had a lot of alone time. Within months, after returning to college, I also learned that not responding to His voice is easier than responding to it.
There are many demands, many louder voices and many distractions in our modern lives. Our world is like an MTV video; the images, thoughts, obligations and desires flash by in an unending stream of changing distractions. Unless I am continually going back to God, finding quiet time and seeking Him, His voice is usually drowned out. I have to choose God, or I will be responding to everything but God.
I have gone through months, years and longer times of being too distracted to hear God’s voice. He has never let go of me, but I have wandered from Him at times. Life is so much better when I am more in tune with God and more responsive to His voice.
I have heard it said that God is a gentleman, and He will not force Himself on us. That is certainly true that He does not force Himself on us. I am not sure that “gentle-manliness” is the best description of God, but He is looking for voluntary surrender. He is love, and He desires a relationship of love with us. If we do not want God in our lives, He will not intrude; and then we are left to our own devices.
If we seek, however, He will be found. If we knock, He will open the door. So it seems from our angle, but He also pursues us. He is always knocking, always seeking us out and giving us opportunities to respond to Him; only God’s voice is the one that sounds deep within, the one that is gentle and kind.
For that reason, God’s voice is easily dismissed. He is not a salesman. He is authentic though. There are many more tempting and insistent voices in our heads, and they tend to drown out God’s voice. In that way, He is found by those who seek Him out. He is found by those who withdraw from the cacophony of the world and dial in to God’s still quiet voice.
I recently read an account of a teenage girl who was captured by ISIS but escaped by donning a burka and slipping away. She described the demands of the ISIS soldiers to read the Qur’an and convert, or die. They raped her friends and killed her brother with many others. God is the opposite of that.
We know God’s voice by the character of it. God may convict, but there is never any condemnation with it. God offers hope. He is kind. He is full of mercy. When we respond to God’s voice, we come to know Him. If we don’t respond, we will not know Him. The choice is always up to us.