Sunday Entries

by Addison Bevere

Separator Words with God by Addison Bevere

February 25, 2024

Why is it So Difficult to Hear Him?

“Know this, my beloved brothers and sisters: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak.” 
—James 1:19

I’m more convinced than ever before that God speaks to us—that God wants us to experience His Voice.

You may be thinking, If that’s the case, then why is it so difficult to hear Him?

I’ve spent many Sunday Entries tackling that question and there are surely more to come. With today’s Entry, I want to focus the conversation on some inspired wisdom from James: “let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak.”

In other words, to better hear God’s Voice, we should be quick to hear and slow to speak.

At first glance, it may seem like I’m taking James’ words out of context . . . Is he really writing about prayer? But in the verses leading up to verse 19, this passage tackles many dimensions of the praying life, including how to ask for wisdom, move through trials, receive from God, remain steadfast, overcome temptations, know God, and ultimately believe in God’s goodness, which is the substance or baseline of all prayer. And in verse 18, James essentially writes that God’s word of truth should be the prevailing sound over our lives. One could argue that James 1 is all about prayer.

Just this week a friend of mine messaged me about words that came to him while he was sitting in silence. God reminded him of a moment that we shared back in 2019, and the Spirit was ministering to him through that specific memory. That moment of listening led him to send me a voice memo that was a powerful and passionate prayer, giving Juli and I specific words that we needed for a difficult situation that we’re facing right now, a situation he knew nothing about.


When it comes to prayer, are you quick to hear and slow to speak? Do you just fire off a bunch of words in God’s direction and move onto whatever’s next? I know I have a bend toward such prayers. That’s why I want to remind us today that prayer is less about performance—i.e., getting the words right—and more about a surrendered awareness that only comes with a listening posture.

This world is inundated with noise; it seems like every person and product is fighting for our attention. God doesn’t need us to add empty, religious words to the noise. Don’t get me wrong, words are important, but words that emerge from surrendered silence are the most powerful words and prayers of all.

Closing Thoughts

I want to challenge you to read James 1 through the lens of prayer as a way of life. Pay attention to what God speaks to you about his nature and the truth about pain and struggle. James 1 is both simple and complex; it doesn’t offer cliches and cheap sentiments. Life does indeed break us, tempting us to believe horrible things about God, ourselves, and each other. But there’s a Voice, and it belongs to the Father of lights, that will lead us home, no matter how loud the darkness may become.

Maybe prayer is where we learn to first hear the Voice and then respond with our own?

Praying with you,

Separator Words with God by Addison Bevere

P.S. I want to extend a big welcome to those of you who’ve recently joined us on this adventure of rediscovering prayer as a way of life. And if you don’t have the Words with God book yet, just click here to grab yours.

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Sunday Entries

On most Sundays, I share a few words on prayer as a way of life, words that help us open the conversation so we can see, hear, and experience more of God in our daily lives. I’d love for you to join the conversation.


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“I’ve been thinking a lot about circles lately. So much of life is defined by circles—our days, week, months, and years form circles for us to move in and through. We’re constantly reminded that the end of a thing has a way of taking us back to a beginning. It would seem the cosmos announces the Circle as God’s shape of choice…”

Addison Bevere is the COO of Messenger International, a ministry founded by John and Lisa Bevere in 1990 that exists to develop uncompromising followers of Christ who transform our world. Messenger is dedicated to providing people with access to life-transforming messages regardless of their location, language, or financial position.

Addison Bevere

Husband, father, author, poet, speaker & follower of Christ

Addison Bevere

Husband, father, author, poet, speaker & follower of Christ

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