Ipods are amazing devices. In the palm of your hand, you can hold thousands of songs, organized into playlists for your listening enjoyment. But it’s not the technology that impresses me. It’s the ability of an Ipod to completely shut out the outside world. A person puts those ear buds on and nothing can burst through the flow but the voice on their current playlist.
Wouldn’t it be great if you could record your own voice sharing words of advice and make it the favorite playlist of all the people in your life? Think of it! Your kids, your spouse, your boss, your friends all walking around listening to your voice tell them what they should do. You can say stuff like “Do you think that was a good idea?” “Maybe you should try harder next time.” “Why put it off? Do it now.” “That wasn’t very nice. You should say you are sorry.” Do you think the sound of your voice in their heads all day long would help them change? Maybe, but maybe not.
Unfortunately, this is the way some relationships work. One person explains, guides, reprimands, lectures, persuades and even at times pontificates in hope that the other person will change. Typically, all the noise in the other person’s ears does not help. Dirty socks do not disappear from the floor, bank accounts do not stop being overdrawn, and tardiness does not miraculously become a thing of the past. The result of all the talk? More struggles, less change.
But what if there was another voice? What if there was a voice that could look deep within a person, see their pain and show them their need to change in a way that was healing? Wouldn’t that be fantastic?
GREAT NEWS! There is such a Voice. It’s the Holy Spirit. Jesus told the disciples in John 16:8 that when the Holy Spirit comes He will “convict the world concerning sin, righteousness and judgment.” Are you thinking, I want to get the Holy Spirit’s play list for all my loved ones and pipe it into their ears”? Well, here’s the deal. They already have the Voice of the Holy Spirit in their lives, all believers do.
My question is -can they hear the Holy Spirit over the sound of you correcting them? If you are in their ears all the time, can they hear the voice of God? Maybe instead of your loved one struggling with you, it’s better for them to struggle with God.
The more you love someone, the harder it is to say less. The only way I know to do it is to trust that in your silence, God’s Spirit is saying just what they need to hear. From someone who spends most days saying too much, believe me when I say this is not easy. Pray for God’s voice to be first in your loved ones playlist. His melodies are so clear and true they won’t be able to resist. AMEN!