Ever notice how kids can have selective hearing? You ask them to take out the trash, or finish their homework and they go unresponsive. But the moment you mention dessert or the pool, they come running quick! Ever think about the fact that we are God’s kids and we do the same kind of stuff to Him from time to time?
Recently I noticed a selective hearing incident that took place in Genesis chapter 4. This is the story of when Cain killed his brother Abel. Right before Cain acted out, there was a crucial conversation God was trying to have with Cain. 6 Then the Lord said to Cain, “Why are you angry? Why is your face downcast? 7 If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must rule over it.”
Look at that. God was reaching out to him during his time of hurt. He was even asking him the “whys”. He was giving Cain an opportunity to dialogue with Him. He was providing a way out of temptation. And what did Cain do? Did he try to keep the conversation going? Did he repent right there and ask God to help him with his angry heart? No, he had selective hearing and decided to ignore the whole conversation completely and react in the worst way possible. The scripture immediately following that one-way conversation went like this; 8 Now Cain said to his brother Abel, “Let’s go out to the field.”[d] While they were in the field, Cain attacked his brother Abel and killed him.
Temptation to do the wrong thing or to do things our way is ALWAYS looming at our door. We have the choice every day to strike out at others and fulfill our angry desires, or we can stop for a moment and listen. That in between time is crucial for us. In between our hurts and how we decide to react holds tremendous opportunity to remind ourselves about Gods promises and focus on the good He has blessed us with. It’s an opportunity to cry it out and pray it out. It’s a time where we can choose our will or God’s will. And it’s a time to see God provide us endurance for the moment as well as a way out when it seems there is no other way. God is a good God. He gives us choices every day to listen to Him or to only listen to our hurts. He is providing a way out for you today.
“No temptation[a] has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted[b] beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted,[c] he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.” -1 Corinthians 10:13 (NIV)
Photo Credit: ID 25047901 © Evgenyatamanenko | Dreamstime.com