, | 14 Mar 2022 | by GEM

Hearing Heaven

by Doug Mitts

Key Verse:    “He who has ears, let him hear.”

– Matthew 13:9, NAS95

God focused my heart on passages like this in 1994. Peter spoke on hearing God and my heart quickened, to some degree, to the reality of heaven here, all around me. I became aware of Godaccessibly present with me. That made me curious. How can I hear?

God kept me pondering this phrase and its meaning. I noticed it occurs several times in the Gospels and in Revelation. In 2015, I facilitated a disciple multiplication training in Poland, and in the middle of discussing Matthew’s version of the four soils, and as I quoted the Isaiah reference, God sent in a zinger — I don’t know what to call it, but it struck a chord and transformed how I understood that parable and the others.

Some of my conversations with God span years, like this one. Maybe you could say, I’m dull of hearing. What happened in that moment made me realize this parable not only concerns sowing the Word but hearing it. God seemed to indicate the quality of hearing the Word and perceiving it with the heart determines the fruit. As my hearing sharpens to God’s presence, so does fruitfulness.

God shifted my heart from seeking understanding first, to more quickly responding to what He had to say. Living into obeying what I hear and learning to better discern His leadership through experience grew in my soul. God interacts on the fly, and while I’m doing something too, but are my ears attuned to Him; am I perceiving Him?

I’ve noticed as I have quickened my responses to God, a healing occurs, a healing of hearing heaven. Along the way, I understood better why Jesus spoke of four soils. Lots of interior issues, fear, anxiety, hurry, hurt, anger, attachments, resistance, even the way I think, seemed to divert my attention and responsiveness from God‘s gentle whispers. The healing I needed concerned hearing heaven. My insides can cover my ears to God.

Over the years, God has grown my self-awareness in such a way that I can understand with my heart and perceive His goodness in the mess. In the mess, the issues of the heart signal for me the need to expect and look for God’s interaction. My soul settles as I pause to listen. Some shifting of heart occurs that allows me to enter in step with His Spirit. I love hearing heaven!

Reflection Verse

“Listen, O my people, to my instruction; Incline your ears to the words of my mouth.” 

– Psalm 78:1, NAS95

Reflection Questions

  • How do you think the practice of silence and solitude could assist you in hearing God?

  • What issues of heart tend to interrupt hearing God? What spiritual practices may help you with those issues?