There are a lot of clouds in the sky. When we look up and see a fluffy lot of them shaping a heart around blue sky, in a moment where we needed to know if God saw us … it is purposeful. Our God is not a coincidental God. He’s an exact, perfect God. He is love, always there for us, all of the time. In the greatest love story of all time, He made a way for us to come to Him through Christ Jesus. He is a relational God. Of course He knows when our hearts need to know He sees us.
God not only sees, knows and hears us, He listens. One definition of listen reads, “to wait attentively for a sound.” It reminds me of the prodigal son, and the father who ran to his wayward son with open arms before he reached home. God sees, from the edges of our hearts’ horizon, when we turn to Him for encouragement, healing, hope, forgiveness, and grace. He is filled with love and compassion for us, and blesses us at times just to thrill us. His plans for us are more than we can ask for or imagine. He knows the number of our days.
When we place our trust in God, His presence in prayerful moments becomes evident in the tracks and trails of our lives. If we were to record our prayers in a journal, we could turn back the pages to past prayers to see how God’s hand has shaped our present day lives. “In him I will trust, and my prayers will ever be to him,” the NIV Study Bible explains. Trust is a “reliance on the integrity, strength, ability, surety, etc. of a person or thing; confidence.” This is why a daily habit of worship, prayer, and reading God’s Word is crucial to growing deep roots of faith.
The maturity of our faith allows us to know God more, and when we’re familiar with who He is, and who we are in Christ Jesus, our prayers become personal conversations as we entrust the depths of our hearts in His hands. “Prayer is not a conversation we start,” David Mathis explains. “Rather, God takes the initiative. First, he has spoken. He has revealed himself to us in his world, and in his word, and in the Word. And through his word, illuminated by his Spirit, he continues to speak.” We don’t pray hoping He will hear and answer; but knowing He hears, listens and does answer.
Turn, or incline, as the Psalm 116 describes, is the original Hebrew word natal. It’s found 214 times in the New American Standard Version of the Bible. It means: “to stretch out, extend, spread out, bend, turn, hold out, extend …” The first time we see this word in Scripture is Genesis 12:8:
Abraham called on the name of the Lord, building altars as he traveled (NIV Application Commentary). Building an altar in ancient times took an effort which reflected Abraham’s faith that God would not only hear, but listen and answer him. Faith and trust in God compels us to worship the Lord. When we are confident he hears our prayers, our daily lives reflect it. “You can’t give anything to God or do anything for God that he hasn’t first given to you and done for you,” Pastor John Piper explains.
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“I love the LORD, for he heard my voice,” the psalmist wrote. We have the opportunity to allow God’s alive and active Word to reach into our hearts in this moment. I love the LORD. He hears my voice. If we were to close our eyes, would we be able to decipher each voice which speaks into our lives?
God knows me. He sees me. He hears, listens to, answers, heals, provides, encourages and loves …me. And you. All of us. There is no greater love than the Father’s for us. He gave His one and only Son, Jesus, to save us from the death penalty that the curse of sin guarantees. We come to the Father through Christ Jesus, alone. And the prayer the psalmist proclaimed as he worshipped the Lord in ancient times becomes relevant in our lives this moment, and always. We are known, loved, purposed, and never alone. Life within the love of Christ is a journey we walk out with our Best Friend, and His Holy Spirit.
The pain of this world is evident. Daily, we are inundated with tragedy, heartache and pain. Injustice seems to win sometimes. Our hope isn’t that the world will get its act together, but in Christ Jesus, and His return to set all things right. “Because he turned his ear to me,” the psalmist wrote, “I will call on him as long as I live.” The daily habit of prayer is a life-giving connection to our Creator. He flows in and through our lives relationally, personally, and faithfully. He has never broken a single promise. We can call on Him as long as we live, knowing He hears – and listens.
You are unchanging, Yahweh. Glory to You in the highest, the One True, Triune, God. Father, Son, and Spirit. Thank You for listening to us. Thank You for salvation, forgiveness, restoration, and constant companionship. Quiet our minds to hear You in all the ways You communicate with us, here and now. We love you, LORD, for You hear our voices, You hear our cries for mercy. Because You turn your ear to us, we will call on You as long as we live. Bless our lives to fulfill You purpose for them, and bring glory to You.
In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
NIV Study Bible, Copyright © 1985, 1995, 2002, 2008, 2011 by Zondervan.
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Meg, freelance writer and blogger at Sunny&80, is the author of “Friends with Everyone, Friendship within the Love of Christ,” and “Surface, Unlocking the Gift of Sensitivity,” She writes about everyday life within the love of Christ. Meg earned a Marketing/PR degree from Ashland University but stepped out of the business world to stay at home and raise her two daughters, which led her to pursue her passion to write. She has led a Bible Study for Women and serves as a Youth Ministry leader in her community. Meg, a Cleveland native and lifelong Browns fan, lives by the shore of Lake Erie in Northern Ohio with her husband, two daughters, and golden doodle.