Proverbs 16:20 Those who listen to instruction will prosper; those who trust the LORD will be joyful.
In the late 1950s when I was a kid playing out in the neighbourhood, all my friends, and I mean all of my friends, could hear my mother’s loud and piercing whistles calling her kids home at day’s end. As I rolled my eyes, everyone would look at me and say, “Hey Sawyer, looks like you got to go home, your mom is calling you.” That was fine because it was a sign that they all had to go home too.
No saints, there were no long-lasting traumatic effects on my psyche. I know that today’s sensitivities to every imaginable excuse and reason for therapy are out there. Called home by being whistled at may be detrimental and cause permanent scarring in today’s child diagnosis handbook, but it was not that way back then. Being called home with the neighbourhood dogs who had also heard the high decibel whistles did not affect my charming nature or cool disposition. I may pant and howl when a fire truck goes by, but that is no reason to diagnose me as flawed or commit me to therapy.
Those three trilling high-frequency whistles that could clearly be heard, was a direct instruction that needed no words to accompany the sounding blast. It was distinctively my mother’s whistle, and it was saying, “Time to come home, and do it now!” We are the Lord’s children, or as such, His kids. We also have to keep the ears of our hearts open to hearing what the Spirit of the Lord is saying and to respond when He is calling us. Whether God has a type of whistle or gentle nudge that awakens our heart when He calls, we need to know that the instruction is clear and safe to follow. John 10:27 My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me.
To hear the voice of the Lord is a tremendous blessing. Why would God make it difficult to hear His voice if He instructed us to obey His voice? Deut. 28:2 And all these blessings shall come upon you and overtake you, because you obey the voice of the LORD your God. Responding to God’s voice should not be confusing as so many make it out to be. God’s leading is clear, but on the other hand, the enemy’s deceptive directions always come with condemnation and confused dysfunction. God’s voice and guidance bring peace. Prov. 16:20 Those who listen to instruction will prosper; those who trust the LORD will be joyful.
During one of Elijah’s vulnerable times in his life, he needed to hear the voice of the Lord to know what to do next. Like many people who look for monstrous signs and wonders to be led, Elijah looked for God’s voice in a cyclonic windstorm that scattered rocks on a mountainside and then in an earthquake, but it was not there. After the tremors, Elijah looks in a blazing fire but the Lord’s voice was not there either. It was after all the noises had settled down did he finally hear God. 1Kings 19:12b And after the fire there was the sound of a gentle whisper. Elijah knew that he knew he was hearing from God and he was able to proceed with the mandate of his calling.
The word of the Lord says that God speaks to us through His son Jesus. Heb. 1:2a Has in these last days spoken to us by His Son, whom He has appointed heir of all things. Much confusion comes to people when they stop reading the word of God and stop inquiring of God through prayer. People forget that the word clearly says, “Jesus is the way the truth and the life, and it is through Jesus that we will have fellowship with our heavenly Father.” Keeping our ears and hearts tuned to the still soft voice or whistle God uses to get our attention is an acquired skill we are to keep learning throughout our walk with the Lord as long as we are on this earth.
As I had to learn to hear and obey the hair-raising whistle my mother used to get us home, I must keep learning and hearing the voice of the Lord that will make sure I make it to my heavenly home. Heavenly Father, your voice is a wonder to behold. Thank you, Lord, that you speak to your children clearly and precisely with love. Jude 1:24 Now all glory to God, who is able to keep you from falling away and will bring you with great joy into his glorious presence without a single fault. Amen and amen!