Our verse for today comes from Acts 12:22, “And the people were shouting, ‘The voice of a god, and not of a man.’”
For the past forty years, San Diego has hosted a convention that draws well over 100,000 people. It’s called Comic-Con, and its attendees are mega-enthusiasts of comic books, cartoons, and video games. Originally, comic books and their growth as an acceptable and worthy form of culture, entertainment, and art dominated the scope of these annual gatherings. But over time, as animation in television, movies, and electronics has grown exponentially, the interest and focus has shifted from what is read in print to what is experienced on a screen.
Part of the fascination of the convention is the opportunity to meet the people who are behind the voices of the fans’ favorite characters. Without hesitation, every voice actor will profess their great thrill comes when a youngster meets them in person and then gets to hear the voice that usually comes from the mouth of one with four fingers and an unusually disproportioned head. And that’s no great surprise, is it? The sound of a voice carries enormous emotive power. And when the sound carries with it a certain message, its sway can be practically irresistible.
Such was the case with Herod and the praises lofted his way following his oration, complete with royal robes and a throne. And such can be the case with what makes its way into our heart. Where we should be listening out for the voice of God, we can easily, subtly, yet readily elevate our own voice to the place of a god’s, and with that message resonating within, go on to dishonor the One who rightfully sits on the only throne that matters.
To be sure, it is a valuable and necessary discipline to be able to determine between our own voice that sounds so agreeable and sensible, and the voice of God that speaks to us through the pages of scripture. His voice is not swayed by the current climate or a cunning agenda. It does not seek out the praises of others nor need cleaning up after. God most definitely speaks today. And one day, we’ll get to meet the One behind the voice. And how much greater that time will be if His voice is more familiar to our heart than our own.
As we seek Him today, replace your filter of striving, worrying, and consuming with the filter of waiting, reading, and praying.