I had a chance to do a 7 mile hike this morning. I started at 6:45 AM to beat the heat. I hiked up to the Washington Monument on the AT. I was alone for a while leaning against the stone wall watching the clouds go by. Its in peaceful times like that when you expect to hear God's voice, but it doesn't always work that way. Prayer happens through relationship not necessarily through our circumstances or quiet of the environment. If we don't take time to develop a discipline of prayer, then we can't just show up and expect God to speak. I thought about this dynamic while hiking some hills on the AT. When I was only hiking under 4 mile hikes, the hills were a lot tougher, but since I've increased my miles, I have more stamina to attack the hills. Prayer is the same way. We need to work at it, allow the Holy Spirit to develop our discernment, focus our ability to hear God clearly, and discipline our mind. Then when we're alone with God, we'll already be prepared to hear Him speak.