Listen and Hear

Give ear and hear my voice, Listen and hear my speech.
— Isaiah 28:23 NKJV

Hearing God is very dear to my heart. I love the subject, but more than just a subject, hearing the voice of God is about relationship. Biblical scholars refer to one particular period in the history of the Scriptures as the “silent years,” the 400 years between Malachi and Matthew when no prophetic voice was heard in the land. This does not mean that the Father was not speaking, the question is, “Were there people willing to listen?” The Father loves to speak to individuals who are willing to listen. There should never be a time again in history where the voice of the Father is not heard.

God created us with physical senses, and it is through these senses that He communicates with us. Giving our ear to Him denotes making time for Him. If we say we are too busy to spend time with Him, we expose our misplaced priorities. To establish a place of daily interaction with the Father means that He has our ears both naturally and spiritually. We make a deliberate decision to come before Him continually. In order to hear His voice, we must make a deliberate decision to separate ourselves for a time from the world of noise, the wisdom of man, the robotic list of everyday responsibilities that get in our way, the excuse of not having enough time in the day, and so forth. We make time for those things that are truly important to us; those things that we love and which satisfy us! Giving our ear to God means coming to the place of making a conscious decision and surrendering ourselves wholeheartedly to Him. It’s at this juncture that we “hear” Him speak.

To hear is one thing, but then we are instructed to listen. There is indeed a difference between hearing and listening. To hear simply means that auditory organs in our ears respond to and register all kinds of indiscriminate sounds, from background noise to words. Listening means filtering out all sounds and words that are irrelevant to us and capturing that which is most important. When we surrender ourselves—and our ears—to the Father, we hear Him. To listen to the Father means that we obey what we hear Him say. Obedience is critical to our growth and maturity as sons of God because His voice speaks immense wisdom that He wants to impart to us. His voice is our guide, our compass, and a bottomless well of priceless supernatural resources.