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July 30, 2020

“Let anyone with ears to hear listen!” Mark 4:9

Being a parent is a noisy endeavor. My kids often don’t hear what I’m trying to tell them. Quiet moments are hard to come by. I’m writing this at the same table at which my sons are playing a game of Uno; this is not a quiet moment of devotion! When I can find a spare moment of silence, it’s amazing what I can hear.

We live in a noisy world. Whether it’s the joyful cacophony of children, the relentless technological whirring and buzzing of the modern world, the loud voices of this world’s ideologues, or the persistent voices of doubt and anxiety within, there are many sounds competing for our attention. It’s hard to have a quiet moment with God.

I have found through years of work with my spiritual director that moments of quiet reflection are as unlikely to occur naturally as they are necessary. As Christians, we believe that the grace we need comes extra nos, from outside ourselves. God comes to us as the Word spoken, the water splashed upon us, the wheat and the wine consumed. While the Holy Spirit takes up residence within us, we do not come to know God by looking inward, but by listening outward. (This, by the way, does not mean that those who cannot physically hear do not have access to the gospel; it means, rather, that Christ’s church must speak in different ways.)

I refuse to be legalistic about this, for myself or anyone else. There’s no “Finding God in Fifteen Minutes a Day” program about to be revealed here. Each of us will learn to do this in a different way, and it may not happen every day. But we all need it. May you hear the Word of God speaking to you today; may you hear the promise of grace and love that comes from Christ alone. Let anyone with ears to hear listen!

Be well, friends. You are loved.

Creating God, you Word goes forth and accomplishes your purposes. May it find ready soil in our ears and hearts. Give us new ears that are deaf to the lies of this world, that your Word of life and love may be heard. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Image: Corn (public domain).

From → Odds and Ends

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