Watch or listen…
From the beginning, God intended to have a relationship and an open communication line with his children.
Since the creation of men, God said, “Let’s make men in our image.” God revealed his purpose with the Son and Holy Spirit. God himself walked through the garden and communicated with Adam and Eve, then later, God spoke through The Prophets, in the New Testament He sends his son Jesus, and today we have The Holy Spirit.
A Study (University of Missouri) shows many of us spend 70-80 % of our waking hours in some form of communication. Of that time, we spend 9% writing, 16 % reading, 30% speaking, and 45% listening. Studies also confirm that most of us are poor and inefficient listeners. It takes more than just hearing; it takes retention to relay what we have heard.
Communication is vital for growth in every relationship we have.
4 Benefits of Communication
- It is how we get to know each other
- Helps to understand each other
- We stay on the same page
- Set goals and expectations
There are so many distractions that can take away our full attention. There is too much noise that interferes with our ability to listen. I can imagine the Father saying, “hey- look at Me.”
Key Passages: Exodus 3:7,8 (NLT)
7 Then the Lord told him, “I have certainly seen the oppression of my people in Egypt. I have heard their cries of distress because of their harsh slave drivers. Yes, I am aware of their suffering. 8 So I have come down to rescue them from the power of the Egyptians and lead them out of Egypt into their own fertile and spacious land. It is a land flowing with milk and honey, the land where the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites, and Jebusites now live.
Do you remember what God has promised you?
God called Moses to lead His people out of Egypt. He was chosen and given instruction. The Israelites were in distress – imagine Almost 400 years captive? God heard them.
Distress is a noun that refers to the state of severe anxiety or strain. When used as a verb, distress means to cause pain, suffering, and anxiety. These are words used a lot these days; it is a big part of the way we live, think, and act.
Remember, God still hears our cry. He desires to take care of his children. Isn’t that the desire of our hearts as parents?
Q: Have you been in any distress since COVID-19? Is your distress/situation impeding you from listening to what God has promised you? What type of noise are you listening to? Is your problem not allowing you to listen to the Father?
The Scouting Report
So, let’s fast forward – The Israelites leave Egypt with Moses as their leader and God in front of them every step of the way through the desert. God supplied water, food, heat at night, and cool in the day. A little over two years, they come to the place God had promise them, and God tells Moses to send people to scout the land.
He sent 12 men to go out to examine the land. They went in groups- they slept, ate, and searched the area- 40 days.
Then they reported back to Moses: “We entered the land you sent us to explore, and it is indeed a bountiful country—a land flowing with milk and honey. Here is the kind of fruit it produces.
But the people living there are powerful, and their towns are large and fortified. We even saw giants there, the descendants of Anak!”
Picture this Moses standing in front of a few explaining what they are saying- a group of people talking over each other- the noise, the people, overshadowing the Promise given, right from the get-go!
Fear makes them exaggerate the report.
Q: Are you walking through something that fear is causing you to embellish your situation? Are you putting your situation greater than God? What are you listening to?
What giants are you facing today?
The spies allowed fear to determine their response to Moses, which blocked and hindered God’s Promise. They were afraid of giants, the descendants of Anak.
Anak translates to choke and to strangle as if strangling someone with a necklace. The devil wants to choke out and strangle the promise of God.
Three tactics that Anak descendants choke and strangle the promise.
- Ahiman= To block or hinder. This stronghold wants to block and hinder God’s promises.
- Sheshai= To whiten or whitewash. This stronghold wants to make something look like more than what it is.
- Talmi= To accumulate. The devil wants us to be so busy accumulating material goods and getting involved in the world’s cares and entertainment that we don’t have time for God’s purpose.
This is what the enemy does to us; he wants us to look at our circumstances and cause us to block, hinder, washout, and forget.
Q: What reports are you listening to? What news outlet? What type of friends? What report? What counsel?
God’s promises – His spoken Word.
BUT Rejoice – Psalms 46:10 says Be still and know that I am God.
2 Timothy 1:7 God has not given us a spirit of fear but of power and of love and of sound mind.
Jeremiah 29:11-12 promises, For I know the plans I have for you,” says the LORD. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. In those days when you pray, I will listen.
During these times listen to the Father and not what everyone else is saying or doing. Trust in Him and listen to His voice above all else.
Q: If you are in a time of anxiety, stress, or decision, consider these three things:
- What is God telling me or told me?
- What does the Word say or is saying to me?
- Seek Godly counsel