May 14, 2010

Hear the Voice of God

John 5:16-30

“A time … has now come when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God and … live.”
John 5:25


The art of listening must be carefully cultivated. An old proverb says that is why God gave us two ears and one mouth. Listening well is a wonderful skill. We appreciate those who give us the time to share our heart when we say to them: “Please, hear me out.” Listening actively and attentively is a sign of maturity.

Listening is hard work for the living. It’s impossible work for the dead. That’s why Jesus is describing a kind of listening born of grace when he says, “The dead will hear the voice of the Son of God.” Ears are given to those who are spiritually dead, ears that allow them to hear the gospel—to believe the good news—and live!

When we have experienced new life in Christ, and as we grow in spiritual maturity, we are able, ready, and eager to listen to God. The goal, as our lives are renewed, is that we listen with new intensity and insight.

Everyone who hears Jesus’ words lives the abundant life in him.

Hear Jesus now. Be his careful listener. Listen and learn from him. Jesus said, “Whoever belongs to God hears what God says” (John 8:47).

Once again, God, I am speaking to you. Make me quiet so that I listen. After I’m finished speaking, give me silence and patience to listen to you. I know I must hear you to really live. Amen.

About the author — Jack Gray

Jack Gray recently retired after forty years as a pastor in the Christian Reformed Church. During that time he served seven churches from coast to coast in the United States. He and his wife, Wanda, have four sons and three grandchildren. They also have ministered to 44 foster children. This month’s devotions are inspired by his reflections on time at this transition in his life.

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