Friday, September 10, 2010

Raising Your Voice

My voice rises to God, and I will cry aloud;My voice rises to God, and He will hear me. Psalm 77:1

God is amazing! Let me start by saying that. As I looked for a verse to start this morning's devotion with, He had me open my large multi-version Bible to Psalm 77. The NAS version of this verse (above) uses the words "My voice rises" where others use the word cry. Cry didn't do it for me, but talking about rising my voice struck me in the heart.

Yesterday I did plenty of raising my voice, but it wasn't to God. It wasn't for him to hear me and help me. It was at my children. I'm not sure why I was struggling so much to keep my flesh under control yesterday. Could be I didn't have my morning meditation and Bible reading. Could be I was trying to do laundry, homeschool, catch up on housework and was distracted by a new book. Could be because I didn't have my praise music on, helping me keep focus. Could be because instead of raising my voice to God, I was trying to do it all on my own strength.

I know I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me, but I often step out into it on my own. You'd think I would learn, but sometimes we spend "40 years making an 11 day trip" (Joyce Meyer) and I have to be reminded to rely on God EVERY day for EVERY thing.

I also need reminding to actually lift my voice up to Him. (Psalm 142:1, Isaiah 40:9, Isaiah 52:8) This is something I am not very well practiced at. For me, prayer is a very private, silent activity between me and God. However, as God is teaching me, in the Bible prayer is never seen as silent. It is open, verbal communication with God.

* Psalm 54:2Hear my prayer, O God; listen to the words of my mouth.
* John 17
*Acts 4:24When they heard this, they raised their voices together in prayer to God. "Sovereign Lord," they said, "you made the heaven and the earth and the sea, and everything in them.

There is a reason Jesus told His disciples to go close themselves in a room to pray (Matthew 6:5-6.) It was because the expectation was that they'd be praying aloud. Yes, God hears us when we pray silently, but the devil hears us when we pray aloud. It is spiritual battle, and the Word is our sword. {Ephesians 6:17 - Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.}

I've convicted to pray more aloud, and when I do feel more filled with the Spirit. However, I don't do it often. My kids are almost always around. Will they think I'm crazy (more so than they probably already do)? Should I care? No. I should care more about them hearing me talk to God. I should also care more about letting them hear me raise my voice to God, instead of at them. That will make more difference in their lives than any lesson I could teach them on prayer.

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