I Kings 19:11-13 “And he said, Go forth, and stand upon the mount before the LORD. And, behold, the LORD passed by, and a great and strong wind rent the mountains, and brake in pieces the rocks before the LORD; but the LORD was not in the wind; and after the wind an earthquake; but the LORD was not in the earthquake: And after the earthquake a fire; but the LORD was not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice. And it was so, when Elijah heard it, that he wrapped his face in his mantle, and went out, and stood in the entering in of the cave. And, behold, there came a voice unto him, and said, What doest thou here, Elijah?”
In June of 1812, the United States of America declared war on England. The main reasons for the conflict were the British closure of its markets to American merchants and major restrictions by the British on U.S. maritime trade. Yet, President Madison and the U.S. Congress were missing one major fact as they supported and approved the conflict – the British Parliament had just rescinded those restrictions. The six-week journey across the Atlantic Ocean to transmit any information caused the message to be missed. “Presidents of War” by Michael Beschloss describes it this way: “As he planned the American invasion of Canada, Madison could not know that he was launching a conflict – which would consume many American lives – for which the principal cause of war had just vanished.”
In the case of the situation in 1812, the message was missed because of a simple but costly time delay. In our situation today, God’s messages get missed because they are drowned out by the chaos of the noise that surrounds us – noise that we welcome into our lives to fill a void perfectly suited for God’s calling.
The loudest voice is not always the best. It is not always right. The high-volume winds, earthquakes, and fires of talking heads, media moguls, and social influencers might capture our attention and our imagination, but they may actually be causing us to miss the real message. God’s still, small voice is beckoning for a yielded ear and a sensitive spirit. The neon-sign messages of our world may be blinding us to the subtle messages that the Lord reserves for squinting eyes and humble hearts.
PLEASE PRAY FOR AMERICAN CHRISTIANS TO BE INTENTIONALLY SENSITIVE TO GOD’S CALLING IN THE MIDST OF OUR CHAOTIC LIVES. May we never miss a message from God!