Focus! Focus!

My niece grabbed my face in her chubby little hands, looked deep into my eyes, and said, “Focus! Focus!” She did not want just a casual listener; she was demanding I listen for total understanding. If we desire to understand the meaning of what is being said, focusing by blocking out distractions is essential. The same is true for hearing from God.  

Blocking out distractions means we intentionally choose to listen not only with our ears but also with our whole being. So how do you do that?

  • Begin by praying for a quiet and still spirit for listening.
  • Carve out some time in your schedule as listening time.
  • Separate from others. (Think prayer closet.)
  • Clear away distracting physical objects.
  • Write down specific items being sought.
  • Tell family members when entering this time; hang a “Please Do Not Disturb” sign on the door.
  • Consider a prayer or listening retreat, as time away removes distractions.

Many things in our lives require being intentional. Listening for God’s leadership is one of those things. Just as we turn down the television when we want to hear someone on the phone, we need to turn down distractions in order to hear God. What we hear is worth the effort!

Deb Douglas listens and lives missionally in Bossier City, Louisiana.

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