Emily talks about the different ways we can actively hear God’s voice in our life. She reminds us of the importance of rooting your life in prayer to grow your relationship with Christ.
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“Today if you hear His voice, do not harden your hearts, as when they provoked me.’”Hebrews 3:15
- In this talk, Emily shares the need to give your burdens to Jesus through prayer. It’s common to find yourself carrying the weight of your difficul- ties all alone causing you to harden your heart to the heart of Jesus. Emily suggests praying in those times that you are overwhelmed, busy or strug- gling. If you are carrying a burden, no matter how heavy or how light, turn to Jesus in prayer and ask for him to take care of everything and see what happens. Have you felt your heart becoming hardened in the past? What can you do now to soften it towards the Lord?
- When do you encounter silence? When do you encounter the Lord in si- lence? Emily wakes up early to have quiet time before the beginning of the day to pray. How can you make more time for silent prayer with God?
- Are you running on empty? So many of us are running on empty. Prayer is meant to fill us up. Without prayer, we empty out. What prayer or de- votion helps fill you up?
- Who are you praying for recently? Do you have a prayer intention list? If not, go ahead and make one. Try to keep track of the prayers that have been answered. It will be amazing to see the work of God in real life!
- Emily suggests weaving prayer throughout your life by assigning certain prayers to certain activities. What are some prayers that you could say while doing various tasks throughout your day? What prayers would you like to pray more often?
Text: Hearing the Lord’s Voice in Your Life
Welcome back to the Pray More Novena Retreat, my name is Emily Jaminet. And in this session, I’m going to be talking about hearing the Lord’s voice in your life. The importance of hearing the Lord’s voice. So, let’s begin in prayer.
In the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, Amen. Dear Jesus, I surrender all to you. Take care of everything, Amen.
We Need to Get Closer to God
Truth is, isn’t that what we want Jesus to do, to take care of everything, to help us take that step in surrendering our life over to Him so that we don’t have to feel like we are needing to hold up the globe, as you can say but rather learning to trust in His ways, His good and gentle ways. In Hebrew 3:15, it says, “Oh, that today you would hear his voice, harden not your hearts.”
How easy is it to harden our hearts? How easy is it to pull our heart away from Jesus, to remove our trust in Him? And yet, when we hear His voice, the truth is we need to grow closer to God so that he can restore us, renew us, heal us. That’s the gift of our Catholic faith.
Prayer is Your Lifeline
Now I remember when my children were little, there was a period in my life where I had three kids, three and under, I had four kids about five and under. These early years were very challenging as you can imagine. I was adjusting to being a new mom with a lot of little young children. I remember having a conversation with my brother who was a Catholic priest, and he asked me if I took time to read the daily gospel. You know, what did my prayer life look like? I think I even crossed my arms and I responded something like, “I just don’t have time to pray.” I remember putting my foot in the sand and feeling very strong about just how difficult my life was.
I also think I was having a little bit of a pity party thinking about all the things everyone could be doing for me to help me in my trials. That self-centered focused attitude shouldn’t get me very far. And what I came to realize slowly over time is that I had been cutting myself off from the very lifeline of God who was offering me strength, grace, perspective, joy, peace, virtue, and you know, all those years of saying, I didn’t have time to pray, I was the one missing out.
So, despite whatever your difficulties are, whatever’s preventing you from praying, I hope that on this day, you dive a little deeper on listening, carving out time to hear the voice of God. Because that’s really the truth, right? In this culture, we have to carve out time. We have to rearrange our schedules, not just from the busyness but from the noise. So, the first practical suggestion, the first place I’d like you to consider is, when do you encounter silence? When do you encounter the Lord in silence?
Those early hours allow me to start my day in the right way, rooted in prayer. Now a lot of times those early hours begin with our own personal decision of when to set an alarm clock. You know, carving out 15 more minutes of prayer, 20 more minutes of prayer, five more minutes of prayer, an hour of prayer, begins with us not only looking for the minimum, right? Looking for the least amount of time that it takes to get out the door but rather resetting our mornings up for success where we begin our day rooted in gratitude. Diving deeper into morning scripture. Finding a daily mass that could feed us even just one more time a week besides Sundays and holy days of obligations. But making sure prayer is a priority so that we can hear the Lord speak in our life.
Those early mornings have really transformed my perspective on my day, on my trials, on my difficulties and I can’t say enough about doing such things. It’s literally, prayer is my lifeline of how to process some of the pains and hurts that take place in day to day life. He showed us the way to healing and that’s through developing a relationship with Him. And coming to know the graces that flow forth from His heart and even the very gift of our Catholic faith.
As setting our alarm clock at the right time to get up to begin our day in prayer is a great way to start your day. Encountering silence, if it’s in the early morning or at the end of the day and visiting Jesus in the adoration chapel is a fantastic time to encounter silence. It might be the only silence your ears have heard all day. Imagine spending that time with Jesus, making that part of your legacy, showing your own children and your family that this is a priority to hear the voice of God in God’s house.
Root Your Life in Prayer
I can’t say enough about rooting your life in prayer. Once you begin to respond the invitation to pray, you never want to go back to the way in which you once lived I met a mom at the ice cream shop last week who told me that because of the pandemic she returned to praying. She said it had been 18 years that she had gone without praying but the pandemic and raising young children made her realize that she needed strength. She needed help. She needed to learn and to rely on God. And that story really touched my heart because how many of our brothers and sisters out there, our neighbors, our friends are on complete empty?
Prayer is designed to fill us up, we’re designed to pray. When we practice other forms of meditation that are not rooted in the person of Jesus Christ, we can’t be filled up, we empty out and yet we need to be filled up like never before. When we want to encounter Christ in a deeper way, we need to carve out that time. We need to come to know His words, relying on His words, pulling those words in difficult times. Just as I mentioned, John 14:1, “Do not let your hearts be troubled.” I love to go to Jeremiah 29:11 where it says, “I’ve given you a future of hope, not of woe.”
When we are feeling like we need a dose of just encouragement, strength, perspective, turn to the words of Jesus. He does tell us that He is the way, the truth and the life. And we are able to follow Him for He is our shepherd. But being rooted in prayer, being rooted in the scripture, knowing His voice is how we’ll come to encounter Him.
Peg Prayers in Your Daily Routines
I love this idea and I talk about it and prayfully peg your prayers. If you are a person that’s busy and life is full, and you don’t really even know how you’re going to incorporate a deeper prayer life. Think about pegging prayers to certain aspects of things that you already do such as if you know every single day you are going to brush your teeth. You know, maybe that’s the time you pray your morning offering. My morning offering is right smack on my mirror, right in front of my sink where I brush my teeth to remind me to pray my morning offering. Another place that I like to say prayers are in my laundry room.
Oftentimes, I’ll walk in my laundry room and the laundry room looks like a burglar had just arrived. Things are all over the place as someone might be searching for a uniform or you know, their sports equipment and even mixing their dirties with the cleans. So, when I walk into my laundry room, I first try to remember to have a spirit of gratitude. Thank you, Jesus, for the laundry in which I get to do today because it is a gift for me to be able to assist my family in the way in which I do each and every day. It’s a privilege. It’s a gift to be here on earth, to have another day. Next, it’s a gift for them to be here.
So, when I’m sorting laundry, doing laundry, you know, thank you Jesus for this child. Thank you, Jesus, for this activity they get to participate in. Thank you, Lord, for my husband’s uniform, in that he gets to go to work and help our family every day. Changing something that maybe has got you very upset, angry, feeling resentful into a praise of gratitude will not only create a spirit of cheerfulness and maybe perspective, but the grace will be present. Now in my laundry room, if I am struggling, I have praise CDs. Yes, I did say CDs. I always can pull praise music off my phone, but I do love my old CDs. I play those to reset attitude, to reset the tone in my own heart so that I can better love those around me.
I think it’s really important that we peg prayers, especially when we know it’s a near temptation for the grumpy, for anger, for even discontent you know, what are you going to do as a holy reminder, a holy stop sign? That’s what I love about the image of the Sacred Heart in your home. It’s like a holy stop sign reminding you, inviting you, calling you to pray, calling you to recall the love of Christ. The image of the Divine Mercy image is another great example of a holy stop up sign reminding you to trust in Jesus.
Seek Help from Our Blessed Mother
Now, as we desire to hear the voice of God in our life, no better person to look to than the blessed mother. Mary the mother of God, even from the very beginning of reading in Luke’s chapter about the annunciation and the Angel Gabriel appearing to her and inviting her to be the mother of God and her response of yes. And understanding that all things are possible with God is a true reminder to each one of us of what it looks like to be disciples of Jesus.
Mary the mother of God is offering us particular graces. She wants to strengthen us in our walk. She invites us to walk with her through the mysteries of the rosary. For us to meditate on these key aspects of the gospel, of the life of Christ and even the life of our blessed mother so that we can obtain grace, grow in virtue and even pass on to our children and our grandchildren, the significance of each mystery.
Just the other night, we were praying the family rosary which I grew up praying on Sunday night, I can tell you that some of those rosaries were really a little bit messy as you could say. No family prayer is perfect, no prayer is perfect. But what I learned growing up is we tried, we committed to the family rosary on Sunday night and that’s the same for our family. We always attempt to say the family rosary on Sunday nights along with prayer throughout the week.
And just the other day, I had my six year old with me and we were explaining one of the mysteries of the rosary. And it led to a beautiful conversation about what that mystery meant and was going on. And what I realized is we were opening our soul to a significant moment in the gospel. And then we were covering that in prayer. It’s so beautiful to pray and then to pray for others’ intentions, so have an intention list. Who are you praying for? If you want to see and hear and experience the Lord in your life, I encourage you to keep a prayer intention list. See the prayer intentions that have been answered in your life and the life of others. Keep a gratitude list so that you can see God’s hand working each and every day. Areas you’ve provided.
The key for me of being a Christian Catholic woman is knowing that I am never alone, being plugged into my community, hearing others witnesses, reading the lives of the saints and understanding that we’re all in this together and same for you. You’re not alone, we’re all in this together, moving forward.
Invite the Holy Spirit in Your Life
One of my favorite saint quotes is by St. John Paul II that says, “In the design of Providence, “there are no mere coincidences.” What a powerful reminder for each and every one of us that then we seek to experience the Lord through prayer, hearing His voice, when those moments that pop up, that might appear as a coincidence, we turn back to God and thank Him for those many blessings. We thank Him for that opportunity, that God moment that He provided for us.
I see that so prevalent in the lives of my friends and one of the greatest gifts in hearing God’s voice is asking the Holy Spirit to be more active in our life, inviting the Holy Spirit, to ignite our hearts, to set them on fire with love for God the father, love for Jesus, love to do the will of God. The Holy Spirit is meant to heal us, to strengthen us, to seal us so that our witness can truly be an example to others that our light can shine, shine forth. That’s what’s such a gift about prayer.
When you go to praymorenovenas.com, you can see so many Novenas, so many Novenas that can be said for each and every intention. Knowing the power and then seeing what happens when people turn their hearts to God, when they pray to the Lord. That is such a powerful example to each and every one of us about learning to trust in the Lord. To learning to hear His voice in our life. To praying, to worshiping, to remembering to always give Him the greater glory and to invoking the Holy Spirit. To walking through the mysteries of the rosary with Mary. To reciting the words from Luke one. To understanding that God is ultimately in control, and we are not. To not placing our trust in just the things we see. Prayer gives us the strength to do things that are difficult and that might push us out of our comfort zone.
Develop a Devotion in your Home
Recently, I asked a priest about developing a prayer life. Developing a devotion in the home, developing you know, really welcoming the heart of Jesus in a home. And he recited with me, it all begins when we stop choosing the Lord’s name in vain. It took me back a little bit, but I get what he was saying. We need to replace some of those bad habits. Some of those things we do don’t even think about anymore such as using the Lord’s name in vain with praise. And even asking the Lord for the strength that when others offend God, we’re willing to do acts of reparation. We’re willing to say, but I love you, Jesus Those bold acts of reparation such as offering praise to Jesus when somebody else does not has such a powerful and significant effect. And a beautiful way to connect to the heart of Jesus and for us to begin to living out God’s mission in our life in a new way.
So, as we desire to hear God’s voice in our life, it begins with openness, boldness, inviting Jesus to walk through us all through the day, that morning offering, understanding that maybe there are moments that are really challenging, even offering prayers to our Lord throughout our day. So, at the very end, we can thank him for all he has given. To reflect on the areas, we need to grow and to bless us with heavenly sleep.
Again, my name is Emily Jaminet and I hope that we can stay in touch either through social media or come visit my website, emilyjannet.com and learn more about the ministries and outreach that I’m involved in.
About Emily Jaminet
Emily Jaminet is a Catholic author, speaker, radio personality, wife, and mother of seven children ranging from 21-5 and the Executive Director of the Sacred Heart Enthronement Network found at www.welcomeHisHeart.com. She is the co-founder of www.inspirethefaith.com, and her ministry podcast is Inspired by Faith is an outreach of the Columbus Catholic Women’s Conference. Her fifth book just came out this year: Secrets of the Sacred Heart: 12 Ways to Claim Jesus’ Promises along with the previous titles she co-authored including The Friendship Project, Divine Mercy for Moms, Our Friend Faustina and Pray Fully. Emily can be found at www.emilyjaminet.com and on social media as EmilyJaminet. She lives in Columbus, OH, with her family.