Consequences of drifting

It is easy to say we listen but, as noted in the previous post, listening implies action. Either we follow the direction God is leading us or we don’t. In other words, we are anchored in God’s word or we are drifting away.

Moses summed it up a little differently but with significant meaning.

“I’ve brought you today to the crossroads of Blessing and Curse. The Blessing: if you listen obediently to the commandments of God, your God, which I command you today. The Curse: if you don’t pay attention to the commandments of God, your God, but leave the road that I command you today, following other gods of which you know nothing.” Deuteronomy 11:26-28, The Message.

Look closely at his words. The blessing is listening obediently. Being able to discern God’s guidance to us doesn’t come naturaly to most. Those of us who have learned what it means to be obedient quickly grasp that the listening is the blessing because, if we truly belong to God, obedience leads to something amazing. If we are living as our Creator intended, it means we are filled with a supernatural peace, regardless of circumstances.

The curse is that when we don’t pay attention to God’s commandments we will leave God’s presence and thus follow other gods. The scariest part of this curse is the remainder of the verse, “gods of which you know nothing.” There are many instances of God’s people doing just this. As they left God’s presence, they drifted from the Truth.

They subsequently were enticed into believing in other gods and always suffered the consequences. Sure, many of these gods promised prosperity and protection, but when it came down to it – when there was a showdown of power between God and these deities – they not only didn’t win, many times, they didn’t even show up.

We sometimes scoff at the stories in the Bible attesting to other forces in this world. However, we place ourselves in danger when, like listening to God’s direction and will in our lives, we don’t accept all truths found in the Bible. If Moses, one of God’s spokesmen, talked about other gods, then you had better believe there are other gods.

The truth is we no longer recognize them. Many worship at the altar of money or power and, as we drift from God’s road, we find ourselves trapped in a belief that money or power is the answer to everything. Yet, the more we have, it seems the more we want. It’s never enough. We also sacrifice at this same altar. Instead of investing in our spiritual life, we ignore God. That’s usually the first step quickly followed by the sacrifice of our family, friends, and relationships. The same can be said for our seemingly insatiable hunger for power, success, and acceptance. We become willing to do anything in order to worship these gods.

If you’ve drifted from the road, what modern-day gods are you following?

Blessings, Francine

Are you listening?

Do you listen or do you hear?

Some would wonder what the difference is. In our life, it can be the disparity between peace and turmoil, and in our spiritual walk, it can mean the difference between submission and disobedience.
On face value, the definitions appear similar in that we all hear; in other words, we perceive things by our ears. Hearing implies the ability to recognize sound. Everyone, with the exception of the “hearing impaired,” hears – the doorbell, laughter, and conversations.

Listening, on the other hand, implies an effort made on our part to hear. In other words, to pay attention and heed, thus implying action. We listen to our children, our boss, and our spouse. When pursuing an education, a career, or a relationship, the difference between hearing and listening can result in failure or success.

Think about what you hear every day. In the world around us, sound is everywhere from the blaring of loud music to the shuffle of someone following close behind. Constant clatter pours forth from television and radio. These things can play in the background of our lives and we occasionally listen when the sound becomes offensive, frightening, or inviting.

Many noises blend into our surroundings, to the point we no longer notice them – the hum of the refrigerator, the low rumble of the heater kicking on, or the constant flow of vehicles outside our home or business.

All have become familiar.

But, what about God. Do we just hear Him or do we listen.

Many struggle in their walk of faith, desperately wanting to hear a word from the Father. That may be the crux of their problem. Are we being complacent in the midst of how God talks to us or are we eagerly listening?

God speaks to each of us in a kaleidoscope of ways – through His creation, music, His word, and through our pastors and teachers. The question is, are we just hearing or are we listening.

"Guard your steps as you go to the house of God and draw near to listen rather than to offer the sacrifice of fools; for they do not know they are doing evil, Ecclesiastes 5:1, NASB

Blessings, Francine
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