WHO DO WE LISTEN TO?
Let us not underestimate this question! We live in an age when the voices around us are many – to meet up to some standard or other at work, to look physically good, to be the ideal parent doing everything you should for you children, to be the great mate to your friends – I could go on! And we so often end up comparing ourselves to others – all those people who’ve so say ‘got it together’. Someone at New Wine memorably said, “Comparison is the thief of joy’. We quite often feel we’re not as good as the next person, a failure even sometimes. And all this affects how we ‘Relate to each Other’ (the 2nd part of our current preaching theme title), and often not for the better!! St James writes, ‘If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and he will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking.’1 And Jesus wonderfully says, that although He is our master, he now calls us his friends not just his slaves2 . And He promises to pass on to his friends everything His Father tells him. I am discovering that the best place to go to listen is to the Wisdom of Jesus’ Father. We were with good friends the other night, longstanding Christian ones. We all agreed that listening to what God in His great love for us is saying to us is the place of perspective and right direction for any manner of things that come our way. And, again as St James says, we mustn’t just listen to God’s word, but go and do what it says!3 That means living by what we hear ‘in the holy place’, holding to it. For, as St Paul says elsewhere, ‘Where the Spirit of the Lord is there is liberty’.4
1James 1.5 2 John 15.15 3 James 1.22 4 2 Corinthians 3.17