The discipline of listening

source: forbes.com
source: forbes.com

Deuteronomy 12:28: “Be careful to listen to all these words which I command you, so that it may be well with you and your sons after you forever, for you will be doing what is good and right in the sight of the LORD your God.

We all need to have listening ears (Proverbs 20:12). The bible says in the book of Ecclesiastes that when we draw near to the house of God, we should rather be quick to hear and not quick to speak (Ecclesiastes 5:1). What we listen to, has the power to control our lives either to provoke faith or fear.

Because God speaks in the still small voice it means we need to take extra care to quiet the various alternate voices in our soul, so that the communication of the Holy Spirit through our regenerated spirits will reach our soul clearly.

There are various voices in the soul, which does not allow our soul to be receptive to God. When our soul is enmeshed in fear, worry, these are soul pollutants, which would not allow the clear light of the word of direction coming from God to get through to us.

In a kingdom, communication is of the essence, you cannot really say that you are in the kingdom when the word of the king is not getting to you on a constant basis. You need to be aware of the direction the kingdom is going and what you role in it is. Jesus said that if a kingdom is divided against itself (in confusion and disconnected communication), it cannot stand. This shows that receiving briefing and communications from the king is vital for the operations of the kingdom.

The conditions of the soul that allows the operation of the Holy Spirit in the free flow of communication between us and the throne of heaven is righteousness, peace and joy. That is why the bible says that the kingdom of God is not in meat or drink but in righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit (Romans 14:17).

Those are the things that make the operation of the Holy Spirit, connecting us to the kingdom reality possible of hearing from God.

Righteousness

When righteousness is not in place then you totally cut yourself off from the operation of the kingdom of God. Righteousness starts when you realise that you stand accepted by God on the account of the death and resurrection of Jesus. Your righteousness is based on the righteousness of Jesus (2Corinthians 5:21). There can be no functional righteousness except it is flowing from the righteousness of Jesus. This is because our own righteousness is like filthy rags (Isaiah 64:6).

The right understanding of the righteousness of Jesus, gives you the notion of being as pure as you can get, not on your own account, but on the account of God. You should hear God speak to you: (as he said to Jesus) you are my beloved son in whom I am well pleased. God is well-pleased with you. He has good emotions when thinking about you. He loves you and calls you his child.

The anger of God concerning you is non-existent. The wrath that we deserve has been taken on by Jesus, and what we have is the approval of God. When that understanding is not in you, you feel disqualified from hearing from God, because of your wrong understanding of truth of your new identity in Him.

The Holy Spirit by his name brings the holiness of God to bear in your life, because he is the Spirit of Christ and he produces the life of Christ in us, making us reproduce his righteousness and holiness in our lives.

Peace

Jesus is called the Prince of peace (Isaiah 9:6). That is the reality he brings. You cannot hear him when peace is not prevailing in your heart. You cannot get the tone that God is playing in your heart if some other tone is presently playing there. You cannot hear the chord of God’s instruction, if the chord of worry is perpetually being played on your heart.

One sign that Jesus is in your life is the peace that goes beyond understanding. Whether we have peace or not is dependent on who/what we are looking at. When Peter looked at Jesus, his heart was not troubled and he walked on water. He walked in the reality of the kingdom of God and of the supremacy of Jesus (Matthew 14:25-32).

But when he allowed his heart to be moved through looking at the storm on the water, he lost his peace and lost his spiritual balance, which showed when he began to sink. The call of God on your life, the design of God in your spirit is that you will reign in this life, but that will not happen except the peace of God prevails, rules in your heart.

The peace we are talking about is no ordinary peace, it is the peace generated by the Holy Spirit, who brings his reality (of heaven) to bear in our lives.

Joy

It is through joy that we draw from the well of salvation (Isaiah 12:3), i.e. the resources available in salvation. That means salvation is of no benefit to you without the joy factor, since you will not be able to take anything from it. If you allow the devil to steal your joy, he can rob you blind of what is rightfully yours in Christ Jesus.

Paul said: rejoice in the Lord always, I say again rejoice (Philippians 4:4). When the devil can get your joy, he can get your life, because the bible says that the joy of the Lord is your strength (Nehemiah 8:10). To know the Lord is to be infected with his joy.

Once Jesus was said to have rejoiced in the Spirit (Luke 10:21); and the Holy Spirit gives off the fruit called joy (Galatians 5:22-23). The joy that defines life in the kingdom is the joy in the Holy Spirit, because the life in the kingdom is intimately related to our relationship with the Holy Spirit.

We need to learn to tap into the joy of the Holy Spirit. That is our reality when we don’t grieve the Holy Spirit through wilful acts of disobedience (Ephesians 4:30).

We need to change what we allow to define our joy. We should allow the Holy Spirit to infuse us with joy at all time and in all seasons and conditions. When that prevails in us, we draw on the resources of salvation one of which is hearing from God. As it is written: as many as are led by the Holy Spirit, they are the sons of God (Romans 8:14).

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