Learning to Hear God’s Voice
Prayer isn’t just about us talking to God. Prayer is also about us listening to hear God talking to us. And it’s about us feeling His Presence.
But how can we hear what God wants to say to us, if we don’t take time to listen? And how can we listen if we don’t turn off the phone and the t.v. and the other intrusions? Can we hear His Voice if we don’t try to make a place for God to enter in?
There are several ancient Christian traditions that have been practiced by Christian monks and lay persons since the 14th century. These disciplines are practiced to help us come into the presence of God and foster the attitudes of listening and receptivity to God. Centering prayer and Lectio Divina are two of these contemplative Christian disciplines.
For today let’s just discuss the practice of Lectio Divina। Lectio Divina is mainly a way of listening to Scripture। Today we are almost desensitized to sacred scripture reading because we are so used to reading magazines, books, and written material for information and for study. Lectio is just the opposite. It is the savoring of the text—a leisurely lingering in divine revelation.
The Bible- God’s Word- is not to be read only for information like any other book. Hebrews 4:12 tells us, “For the Word of God is living and powerful, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even the division of the soul and the spirit,---“ Scripture is alive and able to pierce your heart and change your life. And God speaks to you through Scripture.
Let’s give the practice of Lectio Divina a try. First find a quiet spot where you won’t be interrupted and make yourself comfortable.
God speaks to us through His living Word. Lectio is the taking of one or two passages of scripture and resting with those passages. We don’t study these verses or analyze them or speed read. We very slowly repeat a few words of scripture and let those words speak to us. Rest with a verse or two of scripture for ten or fifteen minutes. You can light a candle and ask our Father to speak to you through the verses if He wishes.
Try Lectio for yourself. Quieten yourself and pick a favorite passage or meditate on a passage in the Beatitudes. Matthew 5:6-7 “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be filled. Blessed are the merfciful for they shall obtain mercy.” Rest and listen for God’s still small voice to speak to you through His Word.