Through prayer we have access to deep encounters with the heart and mind of our heavenly Father. Jeremiah 33:3 says, “Call to me and I will answer you, and will tell you great and hidden things that you have not known.” God longs for us to call to him as our source of life, wisdom, guidance, and truth. He longs to answer our calls by shepherding us into a lifestyle of continually seeking and receiving revelation from his word and Spirit. But in order for us to truly engage with God in prayer, we must learn what it means to listen.
Mother Teresa said, “Prayer is not asking. Prayer is putting oneself in the hands of God, at His disposition, and listening to His voice in the depth of our hearts.” I find that we do not pray incorrectly as believers from a lack of earnest desire for God, but rather from a lack of knowledge and past experience. Do you know and believe that you can truly put yourself in the hands of your heavenly Father and listen to his voice as Mother Teresa did? Do you know that your Creator longs to open your eyes and heart to receive the knowledge of his love, will, and divine nature?
Taking time to listen to God in prayer is at the very core of Christian spirituality. It is a skill of the highest value that is only learned by patience, repetition, and faith. You can hear God because he wants to talk to you. You have no less inherent ability to hear God than me, Mother Teresa, or any of the disciples. Those who hear God are simply those who make space and seek out his voice.
Psalm 46:10 says, “Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!” In stillness we grow in our knowledge of who God truly is. God longs to make us a people who know him the way you know your family and friends. He longs to make us a people who live, think, and work out of true encounters with him. And learning to encounter God throughout your daily life starts with getting alone in the secret place, quieting your heart, and growing in your knowledge of God. Jesus taught us in Matthew 6:5-6:
And when you pray, you must not be like the hypocrites. For they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and at the street corners, that they may be seen by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward. But when you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.
May you seek and find the knowledge of your heavenly Father today as you enter into the secret place, quiet your heart, and listen to him in guided prayer.