A prophet is not able before he is willing. “Then I said, ‘Ah, Lord God! Behold, I do not know how to speak, for I am only a youth.
“But the Lord said to me,
‘Do not say, “I am only a youth”;
for to all to whom I send you, you shall go,
and whatever I command you, you shall speak.
Do not be afraid of them,
for I am with you to deliver you,’ declares the Lord.” ~Jeremiah 1:6-8
L’Enfant Plaza Metro Station in Washington, D.C., a guy in jeans, a long-sleeved T-shirt and a Washington Nationals baseball cap picks up a violin and plays. He leaves the violin case open on the ground in front of him. This isn’t just any guy, though. Joshua Bell is one of the finest classical musicians in the world. This isn’t just any violin, either. It has a name: Gibson ex Huberman; made by Antonio Stradivari in 1713. Bell paid $3.5 million for this violin. And it isn’t just any old music. The composers have names like Bach and Schubert. It is a 45-minute experiment to see if beauty will stop (or slow) the unending rush. Over 1,000 people pass; 7 stop to listen. When the music ends, $32.17 lay in the violin case.
Jeremiah is willing, and God sends him to a nation that no longer recognizes God’s glory and chases now after that which has no value. “But my people have changed their glory for that which does not profit” (Jeremiah 2:11).
“The awkward times,” Bell recalled, “happen right after each piece ends. Nothing.” No one noticed him play, so no one noticed him stop. No applause, no acknowledgment. For the hustle and bustle, they miss the music.
We must listen to the prophets so we will again hear God.
Righteous God, You still walk with us. In the Garden, in Eden, we were aware of You. We talked with You and loved Your company. Now, we act as if we are alone, as if You are not here, as if we are not accountable to our Creator. But You never left. You still make Yourself known to those whose spirit listens to Your Spirit.
God, I long to hear You, to listen to You, to walk with You. How wonderful when You say, “Well done.” When You say, “Today you will be with me in Paradise.” Thank You, Father, for giving me a new heart, for awakening my spirit, for opening my ears to Your Word. It’s good to hear You again.