“Do you have cotton in your ears?” I remember my grandmother saying this whenever she thought we kids weren’t listening.
Sometimes I feel that way with God – that He knows I’m missing most of what He says. Why?
What Blocked Our Listening When We Were Kids?
Think about what it was like as a kid, when you didn’t listen. What were the reasons?
My list looked something like this:
- Too busy, preoccupied.
- Rebellious – didn’t want to hear, let alone respond.
- Not really sure what the grownups were saying, so I tuned it out, or the words became distorted (like the teacher on Peanuts).
- Didn’t like what I heard, or didn’t want to hear anything a grownup had to say on the matter.
- Believed lies about myself, so whatever was really said became muted, muffled, or lost in translation.
- Too many other voices in my head – mostly different parts of my own mind chastising or ridiculing myself.
- Or just plain overwhelmed and checked out.
Those, and more, are the reasons we as kids often missed what grownups were trying to say to us. We missed helpful advice and direction. We missed expressions of love and concern. We missed fellowship.
The same can happen today in our communication with God. When our spiritual hearing becomes dull, we miss things.
How Can We Tune in to God’s Voice?
As an intercessor, you are no doubt interested in hearing from God clearly and frequently. How can you better attune your spiritual ears to hear Him?
One way is to identify what blocks your hearing.
This requires some heart introspection. What are the things in your heart that stand between you and God?
I went through many years of inner healing ministry to identify and allow God to remove many obstacles that blocked my hearing and my relationship with Him. I strongly recommend inner healing for everyone. We have all “stuff,” and it affects our relationship with God in more ways than just “hearing.”
Praying to Uncover What Blocks Us
Here is a starting point:
Ask God to search your heart and to reveal the things that block you from Him. That is one prayer He is very glad to answer. He began to answer me when I first prayed like this more than 12 years ago. He is still answering me to this day, showing me things in my heart that stand between me and Him.
Ask God to show you:
- What lies you believe that are contrary to what His Word says.
- Where you might hold unforgiveness or bitterness in your heart, or areas of your life where you might need to repent.
- What lies you believe about Him, based on your relationship with primary caregivers in your young life. We often see God based on how we saw those first adults we encountered.
- Where you have become consumed by religion, instead of relationship.
- Any ways that fear or pride might block you from hearing Him.
- Anything and everything in your heart that stands in the way of hearing and responding to Him.
Then realize that Jesus is here to help you pray through these blockages, to be healed, and to be free. Freedom means hearing your heavenly Father’s promptings, and responding to Him in love and prayer.
God Often Speaks in Silence
As an intercessor, it’s important to realize that you might not hear or sense God in ways that you would hear a person who walks into the room and speaks. God will have His own ways of communicating with you, and often His first language is silence. As an intercessor, your heart may simply beat strongly in tune with His, without you hearing a word.
So don’t take silence as an indication that you are not hearing.
But if you feel blocked in hearing from God (it’s usually a distinct feeling), the prayer detailed above can be a helpful starting point for drawing closer to Him and opening your heart even more to Him.
If you would like to learn more about hearing God, I recommend reading this wonderful article, “How Do I Learn to Hear God?” written by my friend Kerri Johnson at The Center for Inner Healing. It’s a quick read, and it gets to the heart of how we hear God.