As a preteen, former procrastinators, I had a ready answer when my mom called: “In a minute.” Sometimes I knew what she wanted; sometimes I didn’t. But “in a minute” was my default response to hearing her voice.
After a while, I received a little talking-to. Now I see my fall-back response was a mark of disrespect and procrastination. It was self-indulgent because I didn’t want to give up what I was doing to pay attention to Mother.
I often have a “default setting” response to God when I hear His voice. The words that come out automatically vary, but all put Him off. “I guess so.” “Not now.” “Later, Lord.” “I’m too busy.” “You must be kidding.” “You don’t mean me.” “Huh?” “Somebody else would be better.” “That can’t be right. I’m already doing so and so.” And my most-used, “I can’t think about that now.” Or “I’ll think about that next week.”
Maybe His voice comes in the form of a sermon or something I read or a friend’s comment. Maybe it’s a nagging thought in my heart or a recurring idea. The prompting of the Holy Spirit comes in many forms.
Sadly, so do my default “not now” responses. Do you do that too? Have you even noticed?
Why do we essentially stiff-arm God when He whispers to us what’s on His heart as it applies to us?
There are numerous possibilities. A big one is that there are many voices calling out to us: social media, TV, movies, music all demand attention – and obedience. Peer pressure, government, church, school, work, family make demands. Busyness can keep us from paying attention to Him as it rushes us along.
With so many voices directing us, we sometimes do not recognize His. We lack a closeness with Him that comes from time spent together. Sometimes we suspect a prompting is from Him, and fearful, don’t want it to be.
This week, will you ask God to help you notice your default response to His voice?
What is your default response?