IN "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" (p. 308) Mrs. Eddy says, "The Soul-inspired patriarchs heard the voice of truth, and talked with God as consciously as man talks with man." How many a Christian has longed to experience such blessed communion as this! No sincere heart ever approached the thought of God without longing to be able to converse with Him in closest fashion; and what should be more natural than that God's children should talk consciously with their heavenly Father-Mother!
All through the Scriptures men are encouraged to believe that they may hear God's voice. Indeed, we are commanded over and over again not only to hear it, but to obey it. But how can we obey if we have not first heard? and how can we hear unless we have first listened? Right here may be seen two of the possible deterrents to divine communion, for men in all ages have for the most part understood neither how to listen nor how to hear. Rarely have they known that it is only the listening ear that can hear any voice.
How, then, are we to listen for the voice of God? Surely the first requisite must be an intense desire to understand Him. One often thinks that one's longing is great in this direction, and still he hears not! Christian Science indicates clearly that it is materiality which closes the ear to spiritual perception. With the ear filled with material desires and beliefs, how can the tones of Spirit be recognized? It then must follow that materiality must be relinquished before we can hear spiritually.