Welcome and talk about picnic
Many of the messages Jesus gave i the Bible were in response to questions people posed to him.
One of the Questions that you asked was How do I hear God’s voice?
It assumes God is speaking.
Some today don’t believe that… some believe God stopped speaking with the death of the apostles.
Jesus told us he would send his HS to teach us, so God is a speaking God.
Now, we need to make sure what we are hearing lines up with the whole of scripture.
God will never contradict himself.
Just because we hear it, or someone comes to us and says, I have a word for you, we still have to make sure it’s God and that it lines up with the WOG.
“If God doesn’t speak today, then the greatest disservice we could ever do to people is to tell them that they could have a personal relationship with God.” Dallas Willard
God wants to have a personal relationship with you and with me.
Throughout the Bible you read, he who has ears let him hear...
3rd Verse - God said...
Jesus - the relationship that God would have with us would be like sheep and a shepherd.
Isaiah - Here’s the way… follow in it.
ILL - Talking to someone you know well on phone, you recognize their voice.
One of the ways we can hear God’s voice is the regularity you speak to him.
I believes that God speaks to us ...
Call to ministry - God showed me speaking to people ...
Car - God spoke about the car
Church - God led us to begin the church
Here are some reasons why we do not hear him clearly… God is speaking but we have a lot going on that can keep us from hearing.
Weapons of Mass Distraction
It’s hard to have a relationship with someone when you don’t have the time for that relationship.
We have so many distractions in our lives that prevent us from hearing from God.
You have to make time for God.
I put God on my calendar.
You have to make time for God or you will not have time for God.
The quieter you become, the more you can hear.
Maybe you should give Sunday to the Lord… don’t do chores… Dedicate another hour or so… take a walk and spend some time with the Lord.
The second weapon of mass distraction is.
IOW, God can be yelling at you, but if you have 100 others yelling at you, you will not hear God.
Football Stadium - everyone is yelling at you, you can’t make out what they are saying.
If you put one person across the field from you with no one else there, you can hear them speaking with a normal voice.
You can always hear more clearly when you get rid of competing voices.
Jesus was always talking but not everyone was listening.
People had all kinds of stuff that kept them from hearing and doing what Jesus wanted them to do.
Think through some of the competition to God.
If they can’t be eliminated, minimize them.
We spend too much time on FB and not enough time seeking his face.
We need to reduce digital… FB, Twitter, Snapchat, Instagram… Distracted… driving...
people together texting…
Kids 8-18 spend 7.5 hours per day on media.
53 hours per week… to one hour of God in church.
Social media has it’s place, and it’s not first place.
Don’t say good morning America until you say good morning God.
Jesus is not going to come try to out yell the world around you.
To hear God’s voice, you have to turn down the world’s volume.
The third weapon of mass distraction is
Jesus is speaking more than you think, but it’s not sticking because you have not prepared yourself.
We have to prepare our hearts.
Maybe spend 5 -10 min before church praying.
God comes to a prepared environment.
IOW, god’s going to speak, and it will seem louder when we have prepared to hear.
Figure out a way to get my life right...
ILL - of the sound.
17.4 KH audio
The older you get, your ears hear less.
The less you are able to hear.
Shopping center in England - began putting an annoying sound at 17.4 KH.
The older people didn’t hear it.
We have actually learned to tune God out.
Jesus unless you become like a child… No matter how old you are, you can still become like a little child and get rid of the junk in your life… come back to innocence.
Example of this...
not in notes
There are three things in this text that give us an inkling of how to create an environment to hear from the Lord.
God is speaking and will speak
God speaks as we READ GOD’S WORD.
Samuel was laying down b the lamp
You can trust the Bible.
It has proven over and over.
We need to read God’s word.
Don’t go a single day without reading at least a verse or a proverbs… Read GW.
OYB, Devotional with reading plan in the back.
God speaks as we CULTIVATE HIS PRESENCE.
He was by the ark
He was by the ark.
The ark was important because that’s where the physical presence of God lived.
In the NT, that place is on worship.
If you are trying to find God, worship… you’ll find him.
God loves worshippers.
Nothing cultivates the presence of God in us like passionate worship.
Some of you guys need to let loose.
Song - In the Garden - I come to the garden alone, where the dew is still on the roses....
You want to hear God’s voice… go to the garden.
Read his word.
God speaks as we GET PLANTED IN THE CHURCH.
He was in the temple
He was in the temple
You have to get involved.
Samuel was in the temple by the lamp… You have to get plugged in.
He will speak to you in a small group… in the growth track… in a seminar.
ILL - How many of you have gone somewhere other than where you told your mama?