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Read Letter

Listen To That Small Voice

Dear Jack,
Sometimes I have these philosophical irruptions. They come inexplicably, triggered by happenstances, the most mundane of life’s ablutions.

I was sitting at my desk, attending to some consulting paperwork, tending to my thoughts. In a bit of retrospection I lifted my right hand to my right ear, touched the edge of the funnel flare of the outer lobe. I moved it inward, feeling the indented cartilage of the architecture of my ear. I rubbed, semi consciously. I felt a physical jolt of insight. Was snapped out of my revelry by a strange sensation. My tympanic membrane became an over-sensitive fiber, like the woven gauze of a naked microphone. It was like my middle ear (which amplifies the sound vibrations of the ear drum) came out! I HEARD A FEEDBACK, like an auditory sensation from “self” – the “inner man” Apostle Paul wrote about.
There’s a difference between hearing sounds and hearing self. Abyssus abyssum invocat. (Deep calleth unto deep). We are surrounded by the sounds of life – the noise in the city, the whirligig of cars, the coughing of trucks, the sounds of nature, the hawings of man, the posturing of egos, the babel of humanity, the cacophony of emotions, the wail of pain…internet, radio, TV… (TV is loud!). These sounds of labour, of attempted happiness – sounds of interaction… they make us tone deaf to “us”. We can’t hear our selves, don’t listen to our selves. We listen to every other thing except our selves. 
We hear the promises of politicians, the condemnations of humans, the accusations of the envious, the endless chatter of confusion, sounds of indiscretion, strange philosophies, ideologies, even senselessness but we don’t listen to our selves – the inner man.  
If we listen to our selves there are things we’d never say. We’d never haul verbal projectiles at “sinners” knowing we’re bigger sinners. (God knows what you did last night). And we’d never judge facts with which we’re not familiar, wittingly condemning the innocent. When we do these things we condemn ourselves. We lay ourselves open to judgment and condemnation. 
If a young man does not pay heed to his heart he will go into sacrilege, contemn, profanation and irreverence. Or how do we explain a young man who calls his father’s age mate a fool on Twitter? Such words are too heavy for young mouths. They betray a lack of understanding of the issues of life. Listen to Solomon: “Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life. Put away from thee a froward mouth, and perverse lips put far from thee.” Proverbs 4:23-24.
Only last week I remonstrated a young lad who told a much older @CNN celebrity anchor to shut up on Twitter. Must we partake in the sacrament of the rude and uncouth? Must we share coarse bread, drink vulgar wine? We can disagree without being disagreeable. The one is argument, the other character. Character is destiny. Watch what you say. We must listen to our inner man. We must listen to our conscience. Some have seared their conscience with a hot iron. You represent to a lady your intention to marry her, all the while having no such design. Patent deceit. She got to know about your marriage to another woman a day to your wedding. You destroyed her emotionally. She can’t marry again. You turned a young bright thing into a widow. *SMH* You collected her money, used her resources, drove her car, slept incessantly with her, and then dumped her unceremoniously. Conscience brother! You date and marry a woman deceitfully with the sole intent of using her to acquire citizenship. She even has a child for you. Once you collected your new passport you manifested. You are so wicked you told her you never loved her. You boast of evil. Surely there’s a God up there, and we’re all farmers. What we sow, we must reap. 
There’s a reason God gave us conscience. It protects us from our fallen nature. Conscience is like those indicators on the dashboard of a car. It’s how we know the engine has a problem. It’s how we know the door is unlocked. Conscience gives advance warning. Just as nerves give our body feedback and sensory awareness, conscience gives us feedback on the polarity of good and evil. Conscience warns us on our plans and actions, saves us from retribution, gives us critical feedback. 
It’s dangerous to deaden your conscience. You’ll be oblivious to danger. Listen to the speakings of your conscience. The voice of conscience is never loud. It’s quietly self assured. Our hearts amplify the pulses, otherwise conscience is calm. It knows right from wrong. I read about the “still small voice” in the Holy Book the other day. The context is a bit of a long story but it involved death threats to Prophet Elijah by that infamous villainess, Jezebel. The prophet had a conference call with God on the issue. They discussed some but they needed to discuss further, to put a succession plan in place. Elijah was asked to “Go, stand on the mountain… God will pass by.” Quite naturally he expected a dramatic flourish as indicator of God’s arrival. I mean this is God! A hurricane wind ripped by like a siren announcing the celestial motorcade. Rocks were shattered “but God wasn’t to be found in the wind”. False alarm.  
After the hurricane wind an earthquake, but God wasn’t in the earthquake. Another false alarm. After the earthquake, fire, but God wasn’t in the fire either. After the fire “a still small voice.” That was God! (1 Kings 19:11-14). God owns the auditory technology of the still small voice. The consumer version is called conscience. Listen to that still small voice. The outcome of your life might just depend on it.
Your mentor, LA.
©Leke Alder 2013

Tags : God, Character, Inner man

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