Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Hear (07/08/10)
TITLE: When Hearing is a Hindrance
By Leslie Aune
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As a child I equated that song with not sinning. Don’t listen to bad music. Don’t listen to gossip. Don’t listen to things that would upset God. Be careful to listen to what is appropriate. Appreciating God’s holiness is a good starting point and as my knowledge of who God is grew, I cherished the fact that this holy God loves us. He sees the damage that occurs when we take harmful words to heart. God doesn’t want the things we hear to put a stop to the plans that he has for us.
We are bombarded everyday with words that are not the truth. The media tells us that Jesus was just another man. Society tells us that we are narrow-minded and intolerant because we say that Jesus is the only way to Heaven. We meet people in the course of our lives who belittle the dreams, the gifts and talents, and the person God created us to be for the benefit of his kingdom. As parents, my husband and I have learned that no matter what we do there is always someone waiting in the wings eager to criticize our decisions. At work, negativity and gossip can affect our job performance even to the point of loosing that job. What we hear has the potential to deceive, discourage, and derail us from our faith and the blessings that God holds in store for us. We see the effect of hearing the wrong things with addictions, depression, and overall feelings of worthlessness.
Studying God’s Word daily and learning to handle the truth correctly is an excellent antidote. God tells us that He takes delight in us and rejoices over us in singing (Zephaniah 3:17 NIV). In times of discouragement I look to Isaiah 42:3: ‘a smoldering wick he will not snuff out’ (NIV). This reminds me that God takes what I do have to offer and nurtures it into a fruit-bearing faith. Paul tells us in Colossians 2:9 that the ‘in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form’ (NIV). Jesus himself made it clear in John 14:6 that he is the only way to a relationship with God. Paul simplifies our work ethic in Colossians 3:17 (NIV): whatever we do . . . do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus.
Raising our children in the faith in today’s world has challenges that cause us to cling to our Father in Heaven and follow his command. God instructs us in Deuteronomy 6:7 and Proverbs 22:6 to raise our children in the faith. As we make parenting decisions we strive to look to our Lord first. After all he holds eternity in his hands and can see beyond the moment. When we do receive advice from friends we try to look to the ones who study the Word and who maintain a Biblical worldview.
What we hear is vitally important in this battle to live in and for Christ. Hebrews 12:1 directs us to cast off all that hinders us. We must watch carefully over what we are hearing, lining it up with what God is saying to us about who he is and who we are in Christ. We must know what words are lies and what words are the truth. If we find that negative, untrue words have become imbedded in our minds and hearts, we must cast them aside, replacing them with scripture that speaks truth into our lives and frees us to move forward to all that God intends for us to be.
“Oh, be careful little hears what you hear!”
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