I love the Lord because he hears my voice… Psalm 116:1
There may be no greater gift than the gift of listening. The word listen is derived from two Anglo-Saxon words. One is “hlystan,” which means “hearing.” The other is “hlosnian,” which means “to wait in suspense.” Listening is a combination of not only hearing what the other person has to say, but an intense psychological involvement with each other. True listening binds hearts together. But listening is a two-way street. If I’m sharing out of a sense of superiority, arrogance, or pride, then I am only speaking and I hear no one but myself. There is no connection with the heart of the other person. True communication always involves listening, even when I am the one speaking.
Have you ever failed to recognize when someone is actually listening to you? How could that be possible? Psalm 115:4-7 tells us the problem just might be the idols we construct. We make idols with our own hands. The problem is that these idols cannot speak, cannot hear, and cannot feel. We then read in verse 8 of Psalm 115, “And those who make idols are just like them, as are all who trust in them.” There’s the reason I can’t recognize when God, and often even those around me are actually listening to me. When I worship my works, my plans, my desires, my wealth, my talents, then these are the idols I have made that will ultimately isolate me. And the only one I will hear is myself.
Is your love for God wavering? If so, perhaps you don’t realize that He is listening to you. Perhaps you are doing all the talking. Perhaps you have made idols that do not speak or hear or feel. We all have times when we doubt God is listening. Sometimes we feel to dirty, too sinful, or too inadequate. But God is there. He is listening. When we seek Him, talk with Him, and take the time to listen to Him, we will know that we have been heard. What would it look like for you to say with the Psalmist, “I love the Lord because he hears my voice.”?