Hearing God's Voice

July 2, 2013
by Lisa McLaughlin-Kent

Jeremiah 29:13 – You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart. (ESV)

In the late springtime, I found myself outdoors in the early morning, enjoying the quiet part of my day before entering into the business of Saturday. My family and weekend house guests were still fast asleep indoors, soon to wake.

As I sat outside, listening to the various birds, I tried to identify the different chirps and sounds. There were some short, gentle chirps, some louder, longer chirps and a variety of pitches and tones that caught my ears. There was also the sound of the gentle wind rustling leaves and the odd sound of a branch breaking. One sound, in particular, caught my ear and drew me to listen closer: cooOOoo-woo-woo-woooo, the slow gentle sound of the mourning dove. To many, the mourning dove is a symbol of peace found in the Bible, art, and poetry. The dove reminded me of the receding waters after the flood. What a joyful sight it must have been to see the dove return with a freshly plucked olive branch. God was using the dove to send a message to Noah.

I knew the sound of the mourning dove, because when I was a child, my dad took the time to teach me how to listen to the sounds of nature and hone in on the various sounds. He seemed to enjoy sharing these things with me, and was delighted when I could recognize and identify the sounds on my own.

My dad passed on eleven years ago now, but I fondly recall our times outdoors together and the various things that he taught me. I loved to please my dad and see delight on his face.

Quietly pondering, I recalled my need to listen for God's voice in the early times of the day and seek His guidance and wisdom. I know that when I do this, I can follow the right path and experience His peace. I want to teach my children many things, like my parents taught me, so that their time on this earth will be as peaceful and meaningful as possible. The most important thing I can teach them, which will never become obsolete or useless, is to listen to God, to hear His voice, and follow His guidance for them. It will benefit them long after I am gone, and I can rest assured that God will lead them through the good times and the trials with steadfast wisdom and love.

I can't always put into words the many things that I have learned spending time reading God's Word or carving out that special quiet time with Him alone. I do know that it is priceless and fills me with peace. Not always does this happen immediately — sometimes, it's later in the week when a new situation arises and the lesson or guidance that God has provided is ready to be applied. I am filled with peace and a thankful heart that He took care in teaching me what I needed to know for future use. What about you?

Philippians 4:4-7 – Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice. Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. (ESV)

Prayer: Dear gracious, heavenly Father, thank You for revealing Yourself to us when we seek You with all of our hearts. Help us to seek Your will and guidance throughout the days ahead and to know that Your loving guidance, wisdom, and presence are available to us, so that we may walk with You in peace. In Jesus' precious and powerful name, we pray. Amen.

About the author:

Lisa McLaughlin-Kent <gotzboyz@rogers.com>
Scotland, Ontario, Canada

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    May it be so Lisa. God bless.


    Wow. What a touching devotional. Thank you and God bless,


    What a beautiful devotional. I will share it happily with a couple of other people.
    (B.C.)


    Dear Lisa,
    Thank you for a devotional of the peace and assurance of the presence of the Lord.
    Keep writing,


    Loved your devotion this morning Lisa. Thank you so much. And timely for me as well.
    May God continue to bless you. Will look forward to more messages from you.
    Be Blessed, Be Surprised.


    Good Morning,
    Philippians 4: 4-7 is for us today. Thank you God. You are so good.
    Thinking of you and praying for you.
    God Bless.


    Hi Lisa:
    I really enjoyed your devotional today. Guess what, I have been passed Scotland many times. I was so pleased to see someone from my old place. Blessings.


    Lisa, I enjoyed what you shared very much and want to thank you for sharing it. I have Doves that com to my feeding table every morning and I also enjoy the peace they bring to me. I also have seen them as a message from God of the peace in my life that through him I’ve been given. May God continue to bless you “One Day At A Time.”


    Hi, I was about to start my day with a time of quiet worship and reading the Word when I read this.
    You brought out the two most important truths I have come to realize make up the only way for me to be in tune with the Lord’s voice from the moment I wake: Put Him first, and Listen.
    Thanks.


    Enjoyed your devotional this morning. I too love to sit and be still and listen to the sounds around me that my loving Heavenly Father has given to me. For me it is the sound of the wind in the trees and the movement of the leaves and the grasses. I find a calmness in them as a child finds the calmness in the rocking of their mother’s arms brings a sense of security to them.
    Thank you so much for sharing with us.
    Gods blessings to you.


    Thank you so much Lisa for sharing these thoughts with us and passing on some of the ways in which you commune with the Lord. I particularly like the way you put into writing the coo of the morning doves. That word you made up will be useful for me to store for future use. My quiet reading time has had to be shifted to very early in the morning when the possibility of being disturbed is almost zero and to date is working very well, for within moments of my diary entry for the day I am right back in dreamland again. And I usually am awake in time to hear not the cooOOoo-woo-woo-woooo of the doves but the squawk of my favourite birds, the crows, fighting for unripe walnuts.
    Blessings.


    Thank you for this lovely devotional Lisa. I am moving it to my ‘devotional keepers’ file for two reasons:
    1) Your description of your early morning encounter with God’s peaceful creatures is the same way I enter each morning — sipping at my first cup of morning coffee outside on our deck and listening to the cardinals and other song birds greeting each other. I take this morning ritual as a time to thank God for bringing me safely into another day, and to thank God also for my good fortune of family and home and peace.
    2) Your statement, “My dad passed on eleven years ago now, but I fondly recall our times outdoors together and the various things that he taught me. I loved to please my dad and see delight on his face.”, puts me in mind of my own father, with whom I shared a relationship similar to yours and who I miss even now, so very many years after his passing into the loving arms of God. He taught me so many things, life lessons I call upon daily.
    (Alabama USA)


    Thank you. Being responsive to you father sure helped you with your Heavenly Father.

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