My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me.
Dr Alfred Tomatis is an world-renowned otolaryngolgist (auto-lairen-gologist), a medical specialty that deals with diseases related to the ear, nose and throat. During his 50-year career, he had one case that stood out and became a defining moment. A well-known opera singer came to him for help because he had mysteriously lost his ability to hit certain notes, even though those notes were within his range and he had been hitting them for years. He had gone to several specialists and most focused in on a problem with his vocal cords. But Dr. Tomatis thought otherwise. Using a sonometer, he discovered that this opera singer was producing 140 decibel sound waves. That’s higher than a military jet engine at take-off. And if it was 140 decibels externally, it was even louder inside the opera singer’s skull. That discovery led to Dr. Tomatis’ diagnosis: the singer had been deafened by the sound of his own voice. Selective muteness was caused by selective deafness. If you can’t hear a note, you can’t sing that note. The voice can only produce what the ear can hear.
I wonder if there’s such a thing as a “spiritual Tomatis effect”? I wonder if the volume of external voices produces a collective spiritual deafness? I wonder if the decibel level of my own voice in my own head has muffled the sound of God’s voice trying to break in? Jesus pulls on this string in John 10 when he connects how listening opens up knowing which provides the fuel for following.
Lord Jesus, dig out my ears that I might hear You today. Quiet the clamoring in my own head. Bring a stillness in my inmost being even when the chaos swirls all around me. Teach me how to listen to You, how to discern what You are saying, how to see where You are leading. And grant me the grace to rise up and follow. For Your glory, Amen.