It’s too loud to hear from God!
By: Simeon Lohrmann
Have you ever struggled to hear God’s voice amidst the noise of life? If you’ve ever felt this way you are not alone. Our circumstances and even our surroundings can cause God’s voice to feel distant.
Sunday night Chris Nowicki and I went to a concert at the House of Blues in Anaheim. I was there not to be entertained, though the bands were certainly fun to watch, I was there to seek out opportunities to share the love of Christ with the bands who were playing. I was there to see the light of the Gospel push back the darkness that hangs so heavily over the music community. I was there to bring hope!
The setting was exactly what you’d imagine from a concert environment: dim lighting, lots of people crammed into a small space bumping up against each other, music pumping at a volume that leaves your ears ringing during the drive home, and lots of energy swirling throughout the venue. Several days before the concert I reached out to the bands that were playing through Facebook to let them know I would be there, and that I was looking forward to meeting them. In my message to each of the bands, I specifically made an offer for prayer should they be interested. Amazingly, two of the bands responded to my message with an expressed desire to connect at the show; I had an open door!
Throughout the show I found myself looking for the perfect opportunity to connect with the performing musicians, especially those in the bands who responded to my messages. At the band’s merch tables they were surrounded by adoring fans seeking a chance for an autograph, a picture, a handshake or a hug. I prayed for guidance from the Lord, but struggled to discern the leading of the Spirit. Eventually the swarming died down enough for me to approach the lead singer of one of the bands. I introduced myself and he lit up as he recalled receiving my Facebook message. As we tried to communicate over the loud music he opened up and shared that he was “concerned with the spiritual direction of the band.” I gave him my business card and told him I would love to connect with him to talk more about the struggles they’ve been dealing with.
We shook hands and I walked away.
That’s right, I walked away. I abandoned an open door to minister through prayer.
In the moment I lacked the perception to see that an opportunity was missed. It wasn’t until the next day as I was reflecting on things that I realized I’d allowed my environment to dictate my actions. Thankfully we serve a gracious God! Yesterday I received a Facebook message from the band expressing their appreciation of my connection with them and a request that I stay in touch.
As a result of my recent concert experience I’ve found myself asking, “How do I hear God’s voice in all circumstances and in all settings?” Undoubtedly there is more than one answer to such a question. As I see it, the obvious starting point in answering this question is through the knowledge of what His voice sounds like. Scripture offers us numerous stories of God speaking to His children in a variety of ways. He spoke to Moses through a burning bush and to Elijah in a still small voice. Everyday we are presented with opportunities to hear God’s voice in unique ways. My personal goal for spiritual growth in this New Year is centered around my desire to discern the voice of the Lord, and to respond without delay to the urges of His Spirit.