The “Closer” Challenge (Week One – Monday)

CLOSER Challenge

Week One – Monday

“Hearing God’s Voice”

This week we will focus on hearing God’s voice in our daily lives. In John 10:27 Jesus says, “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me.”  It’s impossible to follow Jesus without hearing Him speaking to us. I can not tell you how many people have told me they are not sure that they hear from God. Thats extremely alarming. How then can we grow our faith if faith comes by hearing the Word of God?

Maybe its not that God isn’t speaking to us. It could be that we don’t yet recognize His voice or that His voice has been lost in the host of other voices vying for our attention. In today’s society, its easy for the voice of God to be buried in the noise of life. With more ways to be distracted than ever before, we can easily miss hearing what God is speaking to us.

We often look to other sources in an effort to find ourselves and we seek others approval to define our worth. The problem with these ideas are that they give us a distorted view of not only ourselves but the world around us. We begin to have skewed priorities and the busyness of life drowns out the voice of God speaking to us. We believe the lies of social media about what our lives should look like and we waste time trying to achieve a fleeting idea of happiness or success.

This is why we must build our views of everything from a foundation of the Word of God. Its important we work to silence the things in our lives that do not line up with God’s Word. This is why Paul says, “casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ.” Not only do these outside sources subject us to ideas contrary to the Word of God they work to draw attention away from His voice.

It always seems like its one thing after another. I can have what seems like a million notifications in just a matter of hours. Another like or comment, text, voicemail, appointment… you get the idea. Pair that with life in general and it can all become overwhelming just trying to keep up. You have probably heard the old adage, “You are what you eat.” I’ve personally tested that theory and its absolutely true. In the same way, we are spiritually what we feed on. If we feed on negativity, our attitude will be negative.

If we feed on anger and frustration, then that will be our temperament. In the same way, if we feed on the applause of others, then we will end up looking like some strange species that God never called us to be. It comes down to this; if we live on a constant diet of the things of this world, we will look more worldly. Today, as you read our daily reading, make it a point to focus on what God wants us to be focused on. It’s easy to hear the noise but lets work throughout our day to stay focused on the God things.

Today’s Reading

Philippians 4:4-9 | Colossians 2:6-23

Today’s Prayer

Father, help me to focus on what You are speaking to me. Help me to silence the noise so that I can hear you more clearly. Help me to stay focused on the right things so that I can be more effective in the area you have called me. In Jesus Name, Amen.

This Weeks Challenge

We often can’t see how much something effects us till its gone. We become numb to its effects on our life. This weeks challenge is to shut off the voices that do not build us up in Christ. Its time to take a hard look at how much those sources effect our ability to hear more clearly from God. For some this will be easy, for others it could be extremely challenging. Take a week to only feed on things that will edify Christ.

So sign out of social, turn off the tv, don’t go to the weekly gossip social, step away from that negative relationship, and turn off the music that doesn’t glorify God. Instead, take time to pray, read, study, get into a right now media series, and turn up the worship. If you use any of these things for business, then just do your best to shut off and step away from all that you can. Only do whats needed for work. After a week we will reflect on any changes that could serve us better in our daily living. Its just a week, you can do this. We can do this, together.

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