Monday, February 21, 2011

Can You Hear Me Now?

"I called to the LORD; I called out to my God.
From his temple he heard my voice; my cry came to his ears.”
2 Samuel 22:7

It was early afternoon as we left Hoover Dam and headed into Arizona. The day was sunny, windy and very dry. As we began to descend into the desert we drove for close to 75 miles without seeing any visible signs of gas stations, no markets, no houses. It was indeed isolated. I wondered what would happen if we were to have an emergency or car trouble. These are the kinds of areas where the guy on the television commercial for cell phones says, “Can you hear me now?” This leads me to our next point…

3. Communication May Be Difficult

It's often difficult to explain to others what we are going through. Trying to put  our feelings and emotions into words is not always easy. If we have been hurt by someone we trust and love, anger or mistrust of others  can cause us to pull away from those around us. We stuff our thoughts and emotions because we have no one we feel we can confide in.  We feel the need to put up barriers and protect our hearts from being wounded again. So we withdraw to a lonely barren place.

There are occasions when we find ourselves in situations that others simply don’t understand. They may not understand your emotions, or your reactions, or even know what kind of support they could possibly give you. They don’t know what to say! And so, we with draw further…

The enemy loves it when we isolate ourselves…we become easy prey. That very isolation that we intended to cocoon ourselves in makes communication with others very difficult. We just don't want anyone to get too close.

And we end up in the desert
with no one to talk to

There is One with whom we are always able to communicate. One who is always there to listen. One who always understands. One who is always trustworthy. One who always cares. One who never leaves. And One who always has the answer. Our first line of communication is with our God.

"I called out to my God.
From His temple He heard my voice;
my cry came to His ears."
(2 Samuel 22:7)

As I mentioned before, sometimes these barren places are necessary pathways to our God-given destination. Just like Moses and the Israelites, they had to pass through the wilderness on the way to Canaan. It was the pathway God had chosen for them. But the barrenness and desolation often caused them to grumble. Not a good form of communication! But, when they cried out to God, He always heard them and always answered them. He is the one line of communication that will never be broken or interrupted.

That communication line runs both ways, though. Often it’s not us calling out to God, but Him calling us. There are many instances in the Bible where men of God were in the wilderness and God called them.

Moses was hiding out in the wilderness, tending his father-in-law’s sheep on the far side when God out to him from the burning bush. “When the LORD saw that he had gone over to look, God called to him from within the bush, “Moses! Moses!” (Exodus 3:4)

Elijah was running for his life from King Ahab. He fled to the wilderness, fell down and said, “I have had enough, LORD,” ...Take my life;…” (I Kings 19:4). The Lord sent angels to minister to him and feed him, after which he lay down and slept. When he awoke, he fled again to a cave and hid. But, God found him and called out to him and asked him “What are you doing here?” God had a plan for Elijah and it wasn’t hiding out in a cave or wilderness.

If we run to a wilderness on our own to hide, He won't leave us there. He has a plan for us...and He will call out to us. Are we listening? Hebrews 4:7 says, “Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts.” Sometimes, like Elijah, we are listening for God in the thunder, earthquakes or wind. But he found God to be in the whisper. Listen for it...

“Whether you turn to the right or the left,
you will hear a voice behind you saying,
 ‘This is the way, walk in it.’”
Isaiah 30:21

Can you hear Him now?

1 comment:

Jan said...

"The enemy loves it when we isolate ourselves…we become easy prey. That very isolation that we intended to cocoon ourselves in makes communication with others very difficult. We just don't want anyone to get too close."
So true and realistic for too many of us. I love that you bring that moment of clarity that we can turn our desert and wilderness experiences to our benefit if we will take that time to listen to God's voice. The isolation we put ourselves into in an effort to hide and thus open ourselves to attack can be turned around by hearing God speak, even in the canyons. Thanks for a great word!