Sunday, May 10, 2015

Whose Voice are you Listening to?

There was a time when I could not differentiate between two of my children's voices. Yes,I said I couldn't tell my kids voices apart.I think they were about eight and ten years old. I would call home from work to see how they were doing, and would listen to them tell me what they were up to, before I knew if I was talking to Kristi or Todd.
Indeed, it is strange for a mother to not know her own child's voice, but I really could not tell them apart. 
Thankfully, as they grew, it became much easier.

We hear so many voices. We are bombarded with countless voices that come our way. Whether it be on the radio, over the phone, on the TV or even through the internet, we are constantly hearing so many voices.
And what about the voices we hear in our heads. Our minds replay people's voices over and over again. Some of them are great words to hear. Last night I went to sleep hearing again the voices of our dear friends Jimmy and Sarah. We spent a wonderful evening together, just the four of us for our last time when we live in the same place. There was affirmation and encouragement (and quite a few tears), and I know I must have had a smile on my face as I drifted off to sleep as I recalled things they said to us.

Mostly though, the voices we hear in our heads are not so positive. We tend to replay the negative voices. We remember how we have disappointed or failed someone. And it keeps playing over and over again in our minds. Why do we tend to remember and replay the negative words and don't remember the positive? Wouldn't we be so much better off if we concentrated on the good things people have said instead of the bad?

There are other voices we hear.
Often times we don't know where they come from.
Is it our own thought? Is someone else inside my brain?
And it is in those type of thoughts, and the negative words of others, that we too often stay.
Are they real voices? We seem to believe that they are. Because we concentrate on them, dwell in them, and then fall victim to them, thinking they must be true.

EVERYONE in life fails. 
We all make mistakes.
We all have heard negative comments.
But do we need to live in them? Believe them?
Those we view as successful have heard negative things, have doubted themselves, BUT the difference is they start anew, begin fresh and go after what they are pursuing.

The past two mornings, I have been reading in the book of John (chapters 9 and 10) from the Message translation.
In both chapters Jesus asks a question and makes a statement about His voice.
In John 9, Jesus asks: 
                       "Don't you recognize my voice?"

That is the question I now put to us. 
Do you know and recognize the true voice of God in your life?
With so many voices coming at us, in all sorts of directions, do you know the voice of Jesus?
I am confident that if we don't spend time with Jesus everyday, we may not be able to tell His voice from all the others. If you know me at all, you know that I am a HUGE advocate for reading the Bible daily. For me to know Jesus' voice, I have to know His Word.
Because it's in His Word that He most often speaks to us. I am extremely grateful for one woman who emphasized this to me (
You could also look at the Archives heading in my blogs and click on God's Word to see how much it means to me.

But for me, to be in the Bible, to know God's Word, helps me know the voice of Jesus, helps me discern whether that thought in my mind is actually true and from Him or from any of the many voices I hear.
In John 10, Jesus begins to talk about how sheep know the Shepherd's voice and then He calls himself, the Good Shepherd.
                      "and the sheep recognize His voice. 
                       He calls his own sheep by name and           he leads them out...He leads them 
                       and they follow because they are 
          familiar with his voice. They don't
          follow a stranger's voice but will
          scatter because they aren't used to
          the sound of it."

Do you know the SOUND of your Shepherd's voice?
Do you have trouble differentiating between His voice and others?
Are you a bit like me, wanting to hear more from my children, so that you can decide if it really is Jesus' voice?

PLEASE don't assume the voice you hear inside your head is from Jesus. Check it out. Look at His Word to see if it aligns with what it says.
LISTEN to Him. Spend time with Him, so that you can know His voice.
Don't you want the true voice be the one you really pay attention to?
I for one, certainly do. And pray that you will too.
Too many voices vie for our attention. Be careful, very very careful. Listen for the Voice of Truth. 
As Jesus has said:  "I am the way, the truth and the

The voice of Jesus will always be life giving.

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