Tuesday September 21, 2004
InTouch Early Light Devotional
How to Listen to the Word of God
In 1 Samuel 3, the priest Eli teaches young Samuel one of the most valuable lessons of his life. The boy is hearing directly from God, and Eli counsels him to respond, "Speak, LORD, for Your servant is listening." (verses 9-10) This is how we, too, must pray before hearing the Word of God - then our hearts will be open and prepared to receive the Lord's special message for us. Listening prayerfully is one of two things we must do to open our ears to God's message.
The second is that we are to listen with a purpose, namely, to understand who God is, what He is like, how He works, and what He has to say to us today. Listening specifically for such information will help us recognize how to apply the message to our own lives. We all encounter challenges, and a personal teaching from God will equip us to face any harsh realities in our lives.
The Israelites listened with purpose as Ezra read from the Book of the Law. When they heard that the LORD commanded Israel to live in booths during the feast of the seventh month, they got busy doing His bidding. Purposeful listening results in action.
A church service or Bible reading is never boring if we understand the secret of how to listen. We might arrive at church in distress or sorrow, but if we surrender to God's Word, we may come under conviction while hearing the sermon. Then, though our outward circumstances haven't changed, we can leave joyful at the work of the LORD in our life.
What if you and Dr. Charles Stanley could study God's Word together, one-on-one, at your own pace, and in the comfort of your own home? Now you can! Enroll today at the Charles Stanley Institute For Christian Living. www.charlesstanleyinstitute.com
For broadcast schedules, outlines, expanded studies, audio, and video of Dr. Stanley's sermons, visit In Touch's Broadcast page: http://www.intouch.org/myintouch/broadcasts/index_76108.html.