This week I’m continuing a new sermon series, “I’ve been wondering…” Over the last several months you have submitted questions about which you have been wondering. Questions like, “How can a loving God allow good people to suffer?” and “Does God have a plan for my life?” A question that is particularly relevant right now is, “How can we live together when we don’t agree?”
The question for this week is, “How can we hear God speaking to us?”
When you read the Bible, it seems that God speaks audibly to people all the time. Conversations with Adam and Eve. Design specifications for an ark to Noah. Instructions for Moses to liberate God’s people from slavery.
If your experience has been for God to speak to you clearly and audibly, this question may not make sense to you.
Yet for others of us (myself included), we have to learn to listen for the voice of God in other ways. How do we do that?
I believe that the story of God speaking to Moses (Exodus 3), offers guidance on how we can all learn to listen for the voice of God in our lives. Moses begins to hear God speak to his life when he slows down enough to notice a bush and engages in one of the most basic of all Christian spiritual practices – the Practice of Paying Attention.
In her book, An Altar in the World, Episcopalian priest Barbara Brown Taylor writes, “The practice of paying attention is as simple as looking twice at people and things you might just as easily ignore…. [It] is one way into a different way of life, full of treasure for those who are willing to pay attention to exactly where they are.”
One of the treasures of Paying Attention is that it helps us listen for the voice of God in our lives.
I hope you will join us for worship on Sunday. Our musicians are preparing beautiful music. I will offer some guidance and cautions about listening for the voice of God in our lives. I pray that the time will help each of us learn to listen for how God speaks to our lives today.