Listening with a discerning ear

By Sister Amy Taylor, FSPA on Thursday, May 26th 2016

Brick house
Photo credit: Flickr

This is the time of year that many people move into a new house or apartment. Winter has passed and spring is slowly giving way to summer. I have noticed the abundance of moving trucks on the roads. Each time I have moved into a new home I spend the first night aware of each bump, clang and creak as I am not yet familiar with the sounds in my new environment.

After a few weeks I become quite accustomed to the sounds and somehow block out what was once so startling. Only when guests arrive and mention some of the sounds do I realize how comfortable I have become.

  stacked moving boxes
Photo credit: Flickr
In discernment, sometimes the clangs and creaks we hear are distractions that easily lead us away from focusing on what is in front of us. It is a gift from God to be given the grace to listen for the guidance we need to lead us to the next steps on our discernment journey.

The passage 1 Kings 19: 1-18 has served as a touchstone for me in discernment. It is the story of Elijah listening for what he is to do next. Sometimes we have to wait in a state of contemplative silence to really know what it is that we are to do next. Rushing after something that makes a lot of noise? Remember, it may just be a big noise without substance.

As you walk in discernment this week, consider the noises in your life that lead you away from God. Are you chasing distractions?     

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