An often-neglected way of hearing God in your life

How do you encounter God and listen to him speak in your life? I think a lot of Christians expect to see God "show up" when they enjoy blessing or closure in a certain area of life. We equate God with victory over our problems.

What if victory isn't the most reliable place to find God? Here's what John Chryssavgis writes about what he has learned from the desert fathers and mothers (of the 4th century) about finding God:
Each of us must look for the places where we are tempted, where we are lonely, thirsty for meaning and hungry for depth. Each of us will discover the areas that need to be purified, where we can encounter God and where God speaks to us.
The implication is that we should look for God in the "desert" places in our lives -- our places of need. If I could interject a theological principle here, it would be: "God draws near to the brokenhearted" (Psalm 34:18). God is drawn into our weakness. When we search for God and listen for what he is saying to us, our points of struggle are the places to begin looking and listening.

I don't know about you, but there is an abundance of struggle in my life. The desert fathers and mothers encourage me to spend more time sitting in it and listening.


  1. Amen! I have struggled through enough issues and subsequently gained freedom and victory that I now am beginning to appreciate trials for the opportunities they are to draw nearer to the Lord. I say "beginning to" because I haven't arrived yet and my first impulse tends to be to grumble and look for a way out, but then I remember the times the Lord has been the strength in my weakness and turn to Him instead of whining. Such an important concept to grasp and put into action, because I think when we wiggle out of trials, He tends to find new and exciting ways of presenting us with future opportunities to learn the lesson we missed. I'd rather learn it the first time. :)


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