Hearing what matters

There are so many voices in this world whispering, calling, even shouting to us.  There are the voices of injustice, the voices of culture and consumerism, our own inner voices of guilt and anxiety.  I wrestle with all of these voices.  For a long time, I considered myself a “people-pleaser”, but lately I’m realizing that is not the right term.  I’m willing to say no to something if I am certain “no” is the “right” answer.  It’s the different perspectives, the questions of what is valuable, what is best, what should be fought for, and what should be let go of, that paralyze me.

I was recently talking to Alex about how life feels at times.  The best illustration I could give him is that I often feel like a child with a blindfold on, trying to hit a piñata.  I am surrounded by a dozens of people, all telling me where to swing.  Many have different motives. Some may really want me to hit the piñata because they want the candy inside.  Some sincerely want me to be “victorious” and the candy is just something to enjoy together. Others may struggle with motivation and, being that they would like to be the one to break the piñata, may be reluctant to point me in the best direction.

scripture

So as I’m explaining to Alex how I feel: standing there, blindfolded, hearing the shouts of where to swing and not to swing, feeling overwhelmed by the noise of it all, not knowing which voice to trust completely, I asked Alex,
“How do I know where to “swing”? How do I block out all of the noise? I feel like if there was just one voice that I could strain to hear above the others….”.

I felt a little foolish even as those words left my mouth.

The answer was right there. There is just one voice that I need to hear above the others.

There are so many, many voices pulling at each of us every day. The world tells us how we should act and look, what we should value and pursue.  Religion also tells us how we should act and look, what we should value and pursue.  But there is only one voice I need to strain to hear.

My Father in heaven has my absolute best interests in mind.  And in a crazy kind of way, He is actually easier to please than most of the people who surround us.  He desires to guide me, speaking in my ear, telling me which way to go. I can trust Him.

This is my goal this year: to better hear the voice of God. I honestly don’t know what this looks like completely, but I am confident that God will help me hear Him. After all, it is what He desires, also.  And God’s desires do not go unfulfilled.

Below is a beautiful thought from my Barclay commentary on the book of Mark regarding the voice of God. Here’s to a year of not “stopping up our ears” to block out the noise, but a year of straining to hear the “sweetest” voice, the only voice that matters.

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