November 7, 2014
The Voice of God
Most of us have heard, or at least heard of, that “still, small voice” of God, which the prophet Elijah perceived in 1 Kings 19:12 and which the New American Bible, Revised Edition (NABRE) calls “a light silent sound.”
Since childhood I’ve listened for that quiet word or inner “knowing,” but sometimes I suspect I’ve needed a spiritual hearing aid! Even if I’m listening – really listening – will I always hear?
That’s been a lifelong concern for me, but then, a couple of days ago my Bible study group began discussing Revelation, and from the very first chapter, we “heard” God in verse 15 where “His voice was like the sound of many waters,” similar to a rush of ocean waves. Since we live in Florida and have experienced the Atlantic drowning out all other sounds, including our own voices, we began to understand:
• God can be heard.
• God can be heard over a deafening roar.
• God’s voice rises above all others.
If you have ever wondered whether you can “hear God,” Revelation 1:15 will most likely encourage you too. Nevertheless, I confess: I soon forgot!
Then this morning, my devotional readings led me to Psalm 29: 3, where “The voice of the glorious LORD God thunders over the mighty waters,” and I started to get suspicious that maybe God is trying to tell me something vital I need to hear, believe, and remember when uncertainty arises for God’s voice can and will rise higher!
As verse 4 of Psalm 29 goes on to say:
The voice of the LORD
The voice of the LORD
has majesty and splendor.
Blending the voices of many translations found on Bible Gateway, I prayer-a-phrased the above verses in keeping with the adjectives used to describe God’s voice, but NABRE shows the voice as nouns:
The voice of the Lord is power;
the voice of the Lord is splendor.
That power acts, speaking the earth and the universe into being, when in the beginning, God said “Let there be…” and there was.
That power, that voice breaks cedars, divides flames of fire, and shakes the wilderness, yet gently soothes a deer giving birth in a storm-tossed forest!
Let everyone say, “Glory!” and let’s thank God for the peace of knowing the LORD speaks so we who listen can hear.
© 2014 Mary Harwell Sayler is poet-author of Living in the Nature Poem and the Bible-based poetry book, Outside Eden.