Whose voice do you hear?

Even before creation, God saw vast potential. In Genesis 1:1-2 we read, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was without form, and void; and darkness was on the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.”

In these first few verses of Genesis we see God as very creative and strategic when he speaks. In Genesis 1:3-5 God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. Talk about words having power and influence, can you imagine life without light? God continues speaking the atmosphere, dry ground, plants, the moon and stars, birds, sea animals, land animals and humans into existence. He spoke, and it happened, just like that. His words held authority, power and dominion over everything created.

God’s words brought life in every form imaginable to the earth. His words did not create some 6th grade science project put together with duct tape and super clue; He spoke and nature’s most beautiful azaleas, flowering fruit trees, and waterfalls, arose from nothingness. Contrary to some, God is the only Creator, and since we are created in His image, his creativity, along with his DNA, is running through our veins. So, anyway you want to say it, “All creativity credits go to God!”

While God is perfect and uses words to create and sustain life, he understands the power of words and the imperfections of man. In Proverbs 18:21 he warns us about how we speak, “The words we speak can bring death or life.” God speaks life, do you speak life? Do we encourage those around us or do we discourage? Do we try to lift others up, or are we strategically discouraging others to watch them wallow in despair? Do we subconsciously withhold compliments from others to feel better about ourselves?

We know from reading Proverbs 4:23-26 (MSG) that what we say flows directly from the heart. Out of the heart the mouth speaks. “Keep vigilant watch over your heart, that’s where life starts. Don’t talk out of both sides of your mouth; avoid careless banter, white lies, and gossip. Keep your eyes straight ahead, ignore all sideshow distractions.”

The Book of Proverbs offers us the best way to live, and God is clearly letting us know what we say will not only determine who we are, but also who we will be listening to. If the heart is sick, it will attract all manner of negative influences.

When we look back at the Garden of Eden there are several “firsts” that immediately come to mind. First man and first woman. First family and first whole foods store open 24 hours a day, and without the sticker shock! God only had one rule and that rule is explained in Genesis 2:16-17, “You may freely eat the fruit of every tree in the garden except the tree of knowledge of good and evil. If you eat its fruit you are sure to die.” Simple enough, God speaks, and they listen and obey, right?

We are all familiar with the story of Adam and Eve. Eve has another first with the introduction of Snake Face, aka, Satan, and his side show distraction. Eve gobbles up every deceiving word from Satan and then the fruit. She passes the fruit on to Adam and he directly disobeys God. They were listening to the wrong voice. Their disobedience brought harsh eternal consequences for mankind. Their life in paradise was forever changed. By listening to the voice of Snake Face, it cost them everything. Oh God, what have we done?

Do you have one of those moments in your past? “Everybody’s doing it.” “Don’t worry, no one will ever know.” “Try it once, if you don’t like it you will never have to do it again.” Whose voice is influencing your decisions? Do they offer wise council, or do they introduce you to trouble masquerading as excitement? Do the voices inspire you to live a better life and point others to Jesus? Or, do the voices sound like a GPS with bad programming?

Who or what are you allowing to shape your heart? We are bombarded with a never-ending ocean of information designed to keep us informed, but does it bring us closer to God? Do we have selective hearing, or can we hear and distinguish the voice of God from the voice of Snake Face?

Here is the reality; God does not speak schmuck talk to his Children! God speaks words of wisdom, encouragement and life. The enemy uses his words to deceive, just like he did with Eve. His plan is to steal, kill, and destroy you! He will use anything and anyone to distract you from God. He will use music, entertainment, video games, sporting events, and even foods, to build a wall between us and God. He will use flattery or lies to talk us into doing things contrary to God’s plan. He will even twist the Word of God to achieve his goal of manipulation and destruction.

But my friends do not be discouraged; God started a plan for His people back in the garden. God has always had a plan to reconcile his people unto Himself. The plan is Jesus and He is the reason we celebrate this Easter weekend. Jesus is the great emancipator from sin; he frees us from the captivity of our past! “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16

Here is a great way to encourage others, “He died on the cross for you and me, and now He is Risen! He’s alive!”

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