I learned from a wise old monk that the Latin root of obedience is listening. Obedience is more about listening than it is about submitting. If you listen intently to understand, then you are able to follow more faithfully.
Jesus listened closely enough that he only said what he heard from the Father. He had the obedience to listen before he would say anything. Jesus enjoyed perfect union with the Father.
In the same way, I am obedient when I listen to my wife until I understand. I will not give a good response unless I listen first. Otherwise, she may ask for a fish, but I might give her a snake instead.
A spiritual person listens intently and hears God in all things. The heavens speak without a sound in a voice that is heard to the ends of the earth. The sweet song of a bird expresses the joy of the Lord.
Let those who have ears hear what the Spirit is saying.
Calvin Wulf is a writer, spiritual director, and retreat facilitator who lives in Colorado with his wife Lisa. He has a passion for Christian spiritual formation drawing from the ancient spiritual traditions of the Apostles, and Christian sages through the ages. He is also a vowed oblate of the contemplative monastic Order of Julian of Norwich.
TAGS: Spiritual Life, Contemplative Prayer, Silence and Solitude
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