January 30, 2021 — Here to Hear

“In my time of journaling prayers, devotions, and conversation with God,” Stan began, “I again got to the end of the Book of Acts.”

Continuing, he added, “It ends with the apostle Paul in Rome talking with some of the Jewish leaders about Jesus.”

“How did that go?” I asked.

“Mixed,” he replied.  “Some believed; some didn’t.  Just like today; some believe and some don’t.  But what Paul said at the end is a lesson for me in my faith walk.”

“How so?”

“He quoted from the prophet Isaiah about the people having dull spiritual sight and hearing, but there was hope for healing.  Same thing with me today.”

“So,” I replied, “you see something an ancient prophet said, quoted by Paul almost two thousand years ago, as having some sort of relevance for you today?”

“Not only me,” he replied, “but for each person who is affected by spiritual blindness and deafness.  That’s a big crowd!”

“In what way?” I asked.

“Seems to me,” Stan replied, “that there are four essential steps, followed by a magnificent and gracious response from God.  Steps and response that I have experienced and continue to experience on a daily basis.”

“What?”

“Seeing, hearing, understanding, and turning are the four steps,” Stan said, “and they are followed by God’s healing.”

Continuing, he explained, “Seeing God’s word, hearing His voice, gaining understanding through the Holy Spirit, and choosing to turn to God results in being healed.”

“Healed from what?”

“Being separated from God.  By turning to God and accepting His provision for redemption, I have the assurance of salvation for eternity when my time here is finished.  Additionally, while God keeps me here, I have the opportunity to turn to Him and to know God the Father and Jesus the Son more fully in an ever-deepening personal relationship.”

“And,” he concluded, “each morning when I sit down with God, He makes it clear to me that’s what it’s all about; I’m here to hear!

________________________________

Bible verses to consider:

Go to the people and say, you will keep on hearing, but will not understand; and you will keep on seeing, but will not perceive; for the heart of this people has become dull, and with their ears they scarcely hear, and they have closed their eyes; lest they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart and turn again, and I should heal them.  Isaiah 6:9; Acts of the Apostles 28:26, 27.

Prayer:  Thank you, Father, for your provision of life eternally with you through the redemption of the cross of Christ.  Thank you, too, for the opportunity to know you and Jesus more deeply while you keep me here.  For too long, my spiritual ears and eyes were closed to the truth, but you opened them to see and to hear.  Thank you.  I confess that even now there are too many times when I do not seek all you have for me because I choose to be apart from you.  Please forgive me.  And please help me to follow your lead into the deepest possible relationship with you, knowing that I am here to hear, see, and understand what you have for me, including your healing.  Thank you I can and do bring these prayers before you in the name of Jesus.  Amen.

Think on this:  Spiritual blindness and deafness are part of the human condition apart from God.  Do you agree with that?  Why or why not?  After such blindness and deafness are lifted, there are two further steps:  understanding and turning to God.  Where are you with those?  Have you experienced the healing from God that follows turning to Him?  If not, why?  If you have, what does that healing look and feel like?  Is it a continual process of healing or once for all time?  

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