And, behold, thou shalt be dumb, and not able to speak, until the day that these things shall be performed, because thou believest not my words, which shall be fulfilled in their season. Luke 1:20
Sometimes in life our words get us into trouble. The bible says that death and life are in the tongue (Proverbs 18:21) Sometimes we can’t hear from God because we simply can’t stop talking. Our minds are always distracted by the chaos around us, even our inner talk.
The story of Zachariah and Elisabeth is an interesting one. They both wanted a child; however, Elisabeth was barren. They were old and it seemed impossible. Little did they know their child was going to be one of the most important figures of all time. Why did God shut Zachariah’s mouth? The verse says it was because of his disbelief. Perhaps his words would do more damage than good if God hadn’t put a stop to it. He even knows our words before we speak. God knows our weaknesses and personality flaws, and is merciful, but is also willing to protect us from ourselves.
Why do ye not understand my speech? even because ye cannot hear my word. John 8:43
Sometimes it’s in the midst of our rambling that the miracle is just about to happen. Sometimes we need to learn to worship through the storms we face instead of complaining.
And it shall come to pass, if thou shalt hearken diligently unto the voice of the Lord thy God, to observe and to do all his commandments which I command thee this day, that the Lord thy God will set thee on high above all nations of the earth. And all the blessings shall come on thee, and overtake thee, if thou shalt hearken unto the voice of the Lord thy God. (Deuteronomy 28:1-2)
And his mouth was opened immediately, and his tongue loosed, and he spake, and praised God. Luke 1:64
God caused Zacharias to literally wait silently until the miracle happened. Sometimes we like to stick our feet in our mouth, just because we expect the negative to start with. Usually this stems from doubt and unbelief. It is impossible to please God if we don’t believe (Hebrews 11:6).
Yet, instead of speaking death into a situation, Zacharias was able to praise God for He had given them life. A new baby boy was born, one who would prepare the way for Jesus. (Luke 1:13; Isaiah 40:3) It was in God’s perfect timing. He is not limited to age or time or any other circumstance.
I know of a couple who got engaged recently. This woman wanted so bad for her boyfriend to propose to her. She had the expectation that he would propose at a restaurant one night, so when it didn’t happen she was disappointed and and argument ensued when they got home. Little did she know that when they got home he was preparing to ask her.
You see just because we don’t see a result right away it doesn’t mean God isn’t working on it. It just means we have to wait patiently while he works out the proper timing. God’s promises will be fulfilled in the right season. (Ecclesiastes 3:1)
Elisabeth and Zacharias were both stricken in years, and Elisabeth was barren. In middle eastern culture it is very important for women to bear children. Although the situation seemed impossible God promised to give them a son. But, God had a specific timeline in mind for these events to take place. He sees the beginning from the end (Isaiah 46:10).
As I sit here and type this devotional I literally cannot talk; call me a mute if you will. I work in healthcare, and somehow came down with a bug/virus, and it caused me to have laryngitis. I can only really make squeaks but it is painful to do so.
Sometimes I ramble on and on to God; I have a tendency to do this anyway, and sometimes God is like stop right there! You have done all the talking thus far, now it’s my turn. If God can’t get your attention how is He supposed to guide you. Ever hear someone talking but at the end have no idea what they just said? We need to have a real focus on Jesus in order for Him to speak to us and guide us.
Our voices should be used to speak life. For prayer, worship, to communicate and lift one another up, or to teach. Anything else is vain, and probably speaks death. (Proverbs 18:21)
When a debate or argument happens usually there are two parties speaking. One sometimes cuts the other off, or they talk over each other, and things become confusing resolving nothing. If we ramble on and on to God and never sit and listen or try to understand or meditate on His word, that’s all that will happen is confusion. The only author of confusion and also fear is the devil. (2 Timothy 1:7) This is the reason why we need the Holy spirit to help us pray. We are to pray in spirit and in truth. Who better to rely on than the holy spirit. To do this you need to be filled with the spirit of God.
God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth. John 4:24
Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. Romans 8:26
During my sick time I’ve not been able to sing like I love to do everyday or speak without straining, and all that comes out is a squeak anyways. Thank goodness for a keyboard. Viruses are known for affecting our vocal cords at times, but this was just a good reminder that I have to do a lot more listening and asking God what He wants, or what His will is, rather than worry and complain and ramble on about what I think needs to be done. God knows better than we do what needs to be done in our lives, so why do we try to give Him advice?
I see on movies where someone is breaking into a house and the husband and wife crawl out of bed to get the door, and the husband always says “shhh don’t move!” He wants her to wait on his instruction. Now, if she was freaking out, which is easy to do, she would not be sane enough to hear what he wants her to do and chaos would probably occur as she takes matters into her own hands. We must be careful while we are waiting on God not to take things into our own hands and make a bigger mess.
Sometimes when when I’m out and someone is trying to discipline their child I hear, “sit still and be quiet!” The child has to sit still long enough to not only hear but listen to what the parent is trying to say. Make sense?
That’s the same with God. He needs us to be still, and wait on Him to give us the answer for whatever it is we face, or even just for our daily instruction or encouragement. We need to listen for the voice of God daily.
This not being able to speak thing is so frustrating, but I’m trying to be patient and wait this virus out. I finally realize how God feels…. He wants to speak to us, He DOES speak to us, and He WILL speak to us if we give Him the opportunity.
It may not be a super loud voice, a lot of times something will come into my mind, or a scripture, or dream, and I just know that it is God. The bible calls it a “still small voice.” You will know it’s not God if it seems confusing, He is not the author of confusion. His ways are clear and He doesn’t change His mind. (1 Corinthians 14:33; Numbers 23:19)
And he said, Go forth, and stand upon the mount before the Lord. And, behold, the Lord passed by, and a great and strong wind rent the mountains, and brake in pieces the rocks before the Lord; but the Lord was not in the wind: and after the wind an earthquake; but the Lord was not in the earthquake. And after the earthquake a fire; but the Lord was not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice. 1 Kings 19:11-12
It takes practice to discern the voice of God. Sometimes I believe I hear from God, then I go on about my day thinking well that could of been me, but something will happen later or someone will say something to confirm what I heard. God will ensure he gets his message across. But he needs our attention! If you aren’t sure that it is God, line it up with the word of God, if it’s a match then it’s God. If it doesn’t line up with God’s word then it’s not. We need to test the spirits as well, meaning there are many false prophets out there that will claim to be of God but aren’t. (1 John 4)
“My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me” John 10:27
If you are looking for an answer from God for something, first pray and ask. (Phillipians 4:6) But then take time throughout the day to listen, meditate on His word, worship… sometimes He might bring you to a verse that gives the answer. Being still doesn’t mean you lock yourself in a closet and don’t move until you hear from God. While this may work from time to time, what God really wants is for us to be in tune with His presence and His voice and sober/alert and diligent in the things of God so that He can get through. You may not always get the answer right away, but He WILL answer. Sometimes when you least expect it, in a way that you will KNOW that He is God.
Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth. Psalm 46:10