How does one learn to listen to the echo of His voice? This is first and foremost an issue of the heart from which all else flows.
It is written in Jeremiah 17 that the heart is deceitful, perverse and corrupt, above all else. Who can know it and be acquainted with their own heart and mind? This is an often quoted verse by itself, and we lie paralyzed under its weight or we burden others with its horror as if there is no saving us from it; but the question is answered in the very next verse. The Lord Himself knows; He searches the mind and tries the heart.
Has your heart been tried by the Lord Himself? Oh, dear ones, this is where the rubber meets the road for any single one of us. The instant this begins there is no more justifying or pretending, we have been found out and we are defenseless against this Light. Our lives, when surrendered to the Living Christ, Who is the Word of God Who speaks (Hebrews 1:2) Who is alive and full of power, sharper than any two-edged sword; this Living Christ by way of the Holy Spirit penetrates to the very dividing line in our depths exposing our hearts to us (Hebrews 4:12), hearts He already sees and knows, but unto life and life more abundant it is a heart that must be tried. This is going to hurt. There is no other way to say it; to put it lightly would be a detriment to Him and to us.
It is written in Hebrews 12 that the Lord corrects and disciplines every one He loves, the Amplified Classic finishes that verse (6) with, “and He punishes and scourges every son (and daughter) whom He accepts and welcomes to His heart.” But before we put a period on our translations and view God as our punisher, let us look at something – scourge in the original Aramaic is Nagad and can mean draw, lead, attract, draw aside.
Have you been drawn aside by Christ? Does it feel like anything but that? Are you tempted to see only with the eyes of the flesh the circumstances surrounding or closing in on you? Are you perplexed and in despair of what the meaning of it all could possibly be?
It is written in Hebrews 5 that, though Jesus was a wonderful Son, He learned to listen and obey through all His sufferings. Now it must be stated that we are not Christ and we will not suffer to the degree that He did, but since He was God’s perfect Son and it was through all of His sufferings where He learned to listen and obey, what would that mean for us, beloved? Through our varied sufferings our spiritual hunger is made recognizable, and we become more pliable and willing to listen and obey.
Take heart if you are in the shadow of His wing. He is faithful to finish what He started in us. He alone has the words of eternal life.