We should like to hear you on this some other time.

Some other time.   How often do you say it?   “Care to join us?”   Some other time, thanks.   You mean, of course, that you might like to, sometime in the future, maybe, but possibly not.   You just don’t want to commit yourself at the moment.

Neither did the Athenians.   What Paul preached to them was interesting, apparently, but possibly nothing more.   Maybe it was so different from their long-held beliefs that it bore more consideration—later, maybe.   Regardless of the reason, they missed what God was doing at that moment.

For many things, “some other time” is a perfectly reasonable response.   But it’s not a good way to respond to God.   As the saying goes, “If you’re too busy for God, you’re too busy.”   When God speaks, you don’t want to miss it.   It’s important to listen and take hold of what he says.   He has good things to say to you, to teach you, to encourage and guide you, to shower you with grace.   He knows what you need, and it is his greatest desire that you hear and respond to his voice today, not some other time.

This is why prayer is so important: so that we don’t miss what the Spirit is trying to tell us.   Setting aside time in the morning for prayer allows us to hear God’s voice and to let it shape our hearts.

Hearing God’s voice, though—what on earth does that mean?   Well, you might not “hear” it like you hear a human voice; you might not even hear it expressed in words.   But you might experience hearing God’s voice through a thought that comes to mind as you pray, through a conviction in your conscience, or as you recall a comment someone made.   Maybe a verse from Scripture or something you heard in a homily or a hymn at church strikes you in a new way.   God speaks in all these ways.

So listen for the voice of the Lord today.   And when you sense what God is saying, try not to just give it a nod and tell yourself that you’ll come back to it later, as the Athenians seem to have done.   Treasure it.   Try to respond to it.   Now is the acceptable time.

word among us