Monday, July 10, 2017

“Loving… Listening”

"Loving… Listening"      
   Two words in the English language that begin with the same letter are often nearly synonymous - "Love" and "Listen."  This is especially true regarding the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.

    "The Lord will hear when I call unto Him" (Psalm 4:3).
    "I the Lord will hear them" (Psalm 41:17).

    Consider that God exists as an all knowing Being who seeks relationship and fellowship not merely with finite creatures such as ourselves, but also with those who "like sheep have gone astray" (Isaiah 53:6).  What can we possibly offer Him in heart to heart, mind to mind discourse?  Why does He listen to us?  The Biblical answer, of course, rings with grace in the hearts of those who have discovered the answer.  "But God, who is rich in mercy, for His great love wherewith He loved us, even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved), and hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus" (Ephesians 2:4-6).  God listens to us because He loves us, and He loves by listening to us.

   We must allow ourselves to be overwhelmed by this blessed truth of prayer, namely, that the cost of our fellowship with God involved the highest price ever paid for the freest gift ever given.

    "Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ: by whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God… For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of His Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by His life" (Romans 5:1-2; 10).

    God's listening to us required that He not hear when the Lord Jesus cried out on the cross of Calvary, "My God, My God why hast Thou forsaken Me?!" (Matthew 27:46).  Every word we ever humbly and faithfully utter in prayer flows to our Father's throne along the currents of His Son's blood.  This is the Love that listens, and that loves as it listens.  Moreover, Solomon declared, "the prayer of the upright is His delight" (Proverbs 15:8).  Yes, with God, loving and listening are nearly synonymous.  The same is true with us in our human relationships, but that is a subject for another day.  For now, let us be overwhelmed by the wonder of prayer as we remember its cost, and the love that led our Lord to pay it so that He might hear us without compromising His holy integrity.  Overwhelming indeed, but greatly empowering in the encouragement to approach the Throne where a Father awaits us with the greatest interest in what we have to say…

"Let me hear thy voice, for sweet is thy voice."
(Song of Solomon 2:14)
"He shall hear my voice."
(Psalm 55:17)

If my voice is sweet to You, as Your Word declares, 
 if somehow You find delight in my prayers,
and if Your face You call me to seek, 
then Your face I will seek

And my voice You will hear,
my voice You will hear.

Weekly Memory Verse 
    In my distress I called upon the LORD, and cried to my God: and He did hear my voice out of His temple, and my cry did enter into His ears.
(II Samuel 22:7)

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