God Hears: Introduction

God Hears: Introduction

God Hears: Introduction.

“Lord, you know everything there is to know about me. You perceive every movement of my heart and soul, and you understand my every thought before it even enters my mind. You are so intimately aware of me, Lord. You read my heart like an open book, and you know all the words I’m about to speak before I even start a sentence! You know every step I will┬átake before my journey even begins.” (King David, Psalm 139:1-4, TPT).

According to St. John, who is quoting Jesus, God is spirit (John 4:24). Since God is in the form, or rather the formlessness of a spirit, we assume He doesn’t have human features like a face, a mighty arm, or an outstretched hand, as it says in Scriptures. It doesn’t make sense that a spirit would literally have eyes with which to see, or ears with which to hear. Yet how else can we explain at a human level that God can intervene with His presence, that He can hear the groaning of the Israelites in Egypt, or see the miserable Hagar on the run from Sarah? God’s actions are described in human terms, because that’s all we know. That’s the limit of our imagination. The eyesight of a spirit without eyes is beyond our comprehension. The acute hearing ability of a spirit without ears is another world from our human experience.

Take the hearing ability of God, for example. The Hebrew Bible is full of references to God’s ability to hear humans when they pray, when they seek to be heard by God. It is a matter of faith that God has the ability and desire to listen to us. Once again, we are outside of human understanding. The fact is that God’s hearing transcends words. Our prayers don’t have to be carefully constructed as if from an English professor. God first listens to the heart, then the words. He is able to listen to what is going on in the heart before He hears the thoughts of our mind. God’s radar is constantly in the “on” position, ready to listen to whatever we have to say, with or without words. God’s fingers, in other words, is constantly on the pulse of the heart. God’s ears are always open, even if He doesn’t actually have ears.

We trust that God hears our thoughtful prayers, even before we speak. “It shall come to pass that before they call, I will answer; and while they are still speaking, I will hear.” (Isaiah 65:24). A common refrain in the Psalms is the firm belief that God would hear their prayers: “His ears are attentive;” “Does He who implanted the ear not hear?” “I have called aloud to the Lord with my voice, and He heard me.” “The Lord will hear when I call to Him;” “Blessed be the Lord, because He has heard my supplication.” “God surely listened.” And we have a standing promise from the Lord… “Call to me and I will answer.” (Jer. 33:3).

Perhaps we assume through faith that God listens to us, that he hears our prayers when we are able to articulate them. But what about praying without words? When we are unable to put words together, or the times when words are simply not enough to communicate what is on our heart? Are wordless prayers a legitimate way to be heard by God? Yes, the Scripture is clear that God hears our groans and sighs, our tears and laughter, our growls and our heavy breathing. If all we can do is groan or cry, remember that God knows each of us at the heart level, He knows what we mean to say if we had the words. God hears our hearts.