191. Listen Up!

Isaiah 7:3-7 MSG Then GOD told Isaiah, “Go and meet Ahaz. Take your son Shear-jashub (A-Remnant-Will-Return) with you. Meet him south of the city at the end of the aqueduct where it empties into the upper pool on the road to the public laundry. (4) Tell him, Listen, calm down. Don’t be afraid. And don’t panic over these two burnt-out cases, Rezin of Aram and the son of Remaliah. They talk big but there’s nothing to them. (5) Aram, along with Ephraim’s son of Remaliah, have plotted to do you harm. They’ve conspired against you, saying, (6) ‘Let’s go to war against Judah, dismember it, take it for ourselves, and set the son of Tabeel up as a puppet king over it.’ (7) But GOD, the Master, says, “It won’t happen. Nothing will come of it.

When the Lord told Isaiah to go and meet with King Ahaz, the first thing he was to tell him was to ‘Listen up!’ This very well could have been articulated ‘Shut up and listen!’ King Ahaz had just heard some very terrifying news that two opposing kings his people had previously been attacked by unsuccessfully but at great loss had joined forces and were planning their attack against Jerusalem and the people of Judah.

When REALLY bad news comes there is often that moment where it just takes your breath away. For me, it’s like someone just knocked the wind out of me. What you do next makes all the difference.

At that moment, any number of thoughts begin to flood your mind. Sometimes it’s a ringing echo of the report you just heard. Other times it is like machine gun fire of all the potential ramifications of the news and of potential responses. Then there are those moments where the impact of the news just feels like you have been completely deflated and you are stuck in a place of shock and only seem to see an image of the bad report before you. It is in those moments that we must LISTEN for the voice of our teacher, comforter, encourager and friend the Holy Spirit. We must listen to His Words and to what the Word of God says in our Bible.

Listening is the key. Hebrews 12:25, Hebrews 1:1-3 and many other Scriptures all let us know that we are in relationship with a God who speaks. Our Father earnestly desires to comfort us and give us wise council and is always doing so. Too many times we only hear Him as another voice in our over-crowded heads or as a faint voice in the background of our shouting thoughts. Isaiah’s message to Ahaz was to more than just ‘Hear me’ it was to ‘LISTEN UP’. There is a huge difference between hearing and listening.

Hearing is the act of perceiving sound and receiving sound waves or vibrations through your ear. Listening is the act of hearing a sound and understanding what you hear. Listening requires one to actually pay attention and focus on what is being said. When fearful reports come, you must stop and listen for His Word. It is His Word both the written Word and the Words He may speak to your heart by the Spirit in agreement with His written word that have the LIFE, HOPE, and the ANSWER that you need in that moment. Whatever you have to do to engage and listen to Him at that moment you need to do or the fear will begin to cling to you.

Don’t just hear what the Lord is saying to you. Listen to Him. His Word will bring peace, life, faith, and hope in the answer to the situation. Listen to the Lord and FEAR NOT!

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