The courtship rituals of the Emperor penguin are fascinating! I find it sweet that they bow to one another before mating. But what is really interesting is their cries. In large nesting colonies, the male will call out to his female partner from the previous year. If she is there at the same time they will find each other in this huge sea of black and white. They are able to reunite as each cry is distinctive and recognizable.
Today’s verse speaks of a voice that is also distinctive and recognizable. It was a voice heard and ignored by the Israelites in the wilderness, wandering for forty years. They rebelled against that voice and their hearts became hardened with sin (verse 13). It is not that they could not hear His voice or recognize it. It was that they did not want to obey it.
Hearing His voice is not always a comfortable experience. His voice sometimes nudges believers when we are disobedient. His voice calls for deeper commitment and faith. But His voice also speaks words of love and encouragement, hope and reassurance of His control.
I want my heart to stay soft and responsive towards Him. And I want to be able to recognize which voice is His. There are so many conflicting voices vying for my attention. But I know it is His voice when He speaks to me through prayer and the reading of His Word. His voice spurs me on to greater trust and obedience. Condemnation is not heard but rather forgiveness and love. That is a voice I want to hear. That is a voice I need to hear!
I want to hear Your voice today, Lord.