Hearing But Never Understanding

Photo by Brannon Naito on Unsplash

One of the health issues I struggle with is an inner ear disorder called Ménière’s disease. I won’t go into all the specifics of the disease in this post, but if you’re interested, you can check out the link.

For me, Ménière’s causes dizziness, ringing in the ears, and loss of hearing. Most of the time it’s more nuisance than anything else. When it is full blown, as it has been recently, I find myself hearing but not quite understanding, dizzy and off balance, and in a state of sensory overload.

My recent bout with Ménière’s is caused by the extreme arctic weather we’re having here in southeast Texas. Low air pressure and I do not play well together. My internal barometer has been known to predict a low pressure system’s approach 300 miles away. Honest. Throw in temperatures in the teens with windchill temps in the single digits, and I am not a fan.

As I deal with the extreme roaring in my ear, loss of hearing compounded by the extreme roaring in my ears, dizziness caused by the extreme roaring in my ears, and the sensory overload–you guessed it, caused by the extreme roaring in my ears, I think of a verse from the book of Isaiah, and mentioned several more times in the New Testament. You will be ever hearing but never understanding; you will be ever seeing but never perceiving.

You don’t have to suffer with physical Ménière’s to suffer from spiritual Ménière’s symptoms. All it takes is a stubborn heart and a refusal to listen to the Prophet Isaiah, and Jesus.

In physical Ménière’s the constant ringing noise that drowns out clear and distinct sounds and words comes from inside the ear. In spiritual Ménière’s the cacophony of noise comes from outside when we allow world events and world beliefs to drown out God’s clear and distinct instructions given in his Word.

Feeling a little dizzy and off balance with Ménière’s can result from too much fluid build up in the ear, as well as too much salt or caffeine. Feeling dizzy and off balance in our spiritual Ménière’s life can result from too much build up of anything that pulls us away from God, as well as ingesting too much of anything that isn’t healthy whether spiritually, mentally, or physically. 

When my Ménière’s attacks are full blown and out of control, sensory overload, whether that manifests itself as sight, sound, or smell, are unbearable. The best thing I can do at those times is close my eyes, darken the room, shut the door, and rest. When all the sights, sounds, noise of the world descend in a spiritual Ménière’s crescendo around us, the best thing to counteract the worldly sensory overload is to unplug, turn off, disengage from those things, and reengage with the things of God in a meaningful, sincere way.

Then our ears will be opened to hear with understanding. Our eyes will be opened to see with perception. Our hearts, turned to God, will understand. We will no longer be hearing but never understanding or seeing but never perceiving.

Isn’t that what we all long for?

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 They disagreed among themselves and began to leave after Paul had made this final statement: “The Holy Spirit spoke the truth to your ancestors when he said through Isaiah the prophet:  “‘Go to this people and say, “You will be ever hearing but never understanding; you will be ever seeing but never perceiving.” For this people’s heart has become calloused; they hardly hear with their ears, and they have closed their eyes. Otherwise they might see with their eyes, hear with their ears, understand with their hearts and turn, and I would heal them.” Acts 28:25-27 (NIV)

You can find my February Inspire a Fire post here. Please stop by and read it.

I wish you well.


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2 thoughts on “Hearing But Never Understanding

  1. GREAT POST❤️ People just can’t get the complete picture of how Menieres affects the sufferers unless they’ve experienced, but good job of explaining while referencing biblical verses. Stay well…


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