Here is something you might not know about me. I am whistle trained. And it’s not just me. My sister, brother, mother and I have all been whistle trained by my dad. There is this certain whistle he does and when he does we all look, we all stop, we all turn. We all look for him.
His whistle is as familiar to me as he is. He’s done it my entire life. He does it for our safety, our protection. If we were out walking and we got ahead of him on the path and he wanted us to stop and go back to him; he would whistle. If we were at a store and we couldn’t see him or he couldn’t see us; he’d whistle and we’d find him. If we were in the house and he needed us to come help him; he’d whistle. If in all the noise of life we couldn’t hear him calling our names; he’d whistle and we’d hear that instead.
Sometimes I think I tried not to hear it. But that never worked. It is a physical response every single time. My head would turn toward the sound. It works to this very day. Every time I hear it, I turn to look. I can’t help it, it is what I’ve been trained to do.
I was thinking about this and my other dad today; the one who’s off building a house for me. I thought about John 10:27 “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me.” I was thinking about how sometimes I hear His voice but I try not to. How sometimes I hear and listen to other voices instead; ones that tell me slippery, pretty little lies that sound so good they must have to be true. I was thinking about how sometimes He speaks so softly I think I really didn’t just hear that. I was thinking that sometimes I wish He would just whistle for me, because I’d hear that; I’d know where to go then.
So maybe God doesn’t whistle for me. But He does speak. He does, constantly. In all kinds of ways. I have to tune my ears to Him just like I tuned my ears to my dad’s whistle. It’s not just any whistle that I respond to, it’s my dad’s whistle. And God’s voice isn’t just any voice, it’s God’s voice. That still small whisper. That roaring consuming fire.
I have one dad who whistles and my ears hear.
I have another dad who whispers and my heart hears.
I didn’t really have a choice to be trained or not to be trained by my dad’s whistle. It is just a fact of life of growing up in my family.
I do have a choice to train my heart to hear God’s whispers to me. And I’m trying every day to train my heart to hear better.
Hebrews 3:12-15 Take care, brothers, lest there be in any of you an evil, unbelieving heart, leading you to fall away from the living God. But exhort one another every day, as long as it is called “today,” that none of you may be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin. For we have come to share in Christ, if indeed we hold our original confidence firm to the end. As it is said,”Today, if you hear his voice,do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion.”