Imagine yourself standing in the middle of a full auditorium, with thousands of people surrounding you. If every person there were speaking at the same time, would it be possible to hear any individual in the great crowd? Most likely, you'd be unable to distinguish one voice from another.
This same principle holds true with prayer. In our normal everyday lives, we are surrounded by countless voices in need of our attention. Our children cry for it, our employers demand it, and our loved ones yearn for it. With all of these bidding for our attention, no wonder God's voice at times seems so muffled or distant.
Effective meditation requires seclusion. Unless we make an effort to escape our daily demands for at least a few moments, our ability to hear God's voice will be weakened.
Our Lord was well aware of this need for isolation. In teaching about prayer, Jesus told the disciples to go into their rooms and close the door behind them. He knew it was vital to take a break from the pressures of life in order to truly commune with the Father.
The modern world works against this need, however. Mobile phones, e-mail, and other technological advances have brought us the blessing-and the curse-of constant communication and interruption.
At some point today, turn off the TV, cell phone, and computer, and simply listen for God's voice. Your schedule won't surrender easily, so make a decision to claim a block of time for the Lord. Then quiet your extraneous thoughts, and focus on Him. He wants to refresh you with time in His presence.