This Lent, I’ve set out to spend a non-trivial amount of time everyday reflecting, reading and praying. If you’re like me, this normally only happens in irregular spurts.A passage I was reminded of recently by a friend is 1 Kings 19:9-18. Most specifically:

11 The Lord said, “Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the Lord, for the Lord is about to pass by.”

Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake. 12 After the earthquake came a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper. 13 When Elijah heard it, he pulled his cloak over his face and went out and stood at the mouth of the cave.

A whisper! Let us pray for the grace to listen and perceive.

Staying with the theme, I’ve spent a bit of time reading blogs and articles about how God speaks. A few articles I found made some interesting (to me) observations. For most of the Old Testament, God mostly speaks directly to prophets or ‘designated individuals’, let’s say. In the New Testament, God speaks to people through Jesus. And the subject matter is never about the personal goings on of day to day life. The focus is always much larger – the people of Israel, for example. This seems plain and obvious now, but maybe it’s a curious insight when you first think about it like it was for me.

How do we expect to hear God, and what shapes those expectations? Perhaps, if we listen, we’ll hear God in the Word, or our communities, the church and other people.

Grant us the grace to be still and listen.


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