Do you have a personal relationship with Jesus, but struggle to actually feel connected to Him? Does your prayer life seem like a one-sided conversation? How often can you honestly say that you hear God’s voice? Too often, we view prayer as a one-way conversation where we report our wants and apologies to God, and we miss out on all that He has for us.
The good news is that God wants to speak to His children. He wants to have a two-way conversation. We just need to create the time and space to listen to God’s voice.
How does God speak to us?
God has spoken throughout time and continues to speak to His people today. God’s character is unchanging. From God declaring promises over Abraham and his descendents in the Old Testament (Genesis 15 & 17) to to Paul through visions to encourage him and give him direction (Acts 18) in the New Testament, God is not passive or absent when it comes to communicating with those who are ready to listen.
God still speaks to us today. It is our job to learn how to listen to God and hear His voice above the rest of the noise in our lives.
How to Listen to God
One way to listen to God’s voice is through practicing listening prayer. Listening prayer, simply put, is the act of asking God questions and actually expecting a response. The Art of Listening Prayer teaches that God wants to have a personal relationship with us and that if we ask Him expectantly, God will respond to our prayers.
Eliminate interruptions and distractions to hear God’s voice.
We live in a noisy world. Our lives are so full that it’s hard to know how to hear God’s voice above all of the other voices competing for our attention. To hear God’s voice, we need to prioritize time with Him on a daily basis.
If we’re making time with God a priority in our daily lives, we aren’t just going to schedule time on in our busy schedules. We need to make sure that time is free from other interruptions and distractions.
Find a quiet place where you can sit without distractions. Leave your phone on silent and out of sight. Make yourself comfortable enough to spend some time just focusing and listening to God’s voice.
Expect God to respond to your questions.
Examine your heart. In what areas are you inviting the voice of God into your life? Do you need direction, insight, or even encouragement? He wants to care for us. We can ask God for what we need. Don’t be afraid to ask those questions.
No one wants to shout their biggest questions into an empty canyon with only the sound of your own voice echoing in response. We ask questions because we want answers. The same is true for when we ask God, the Creator of the Universe, for the answers we’re looking for.
When you ask a question, expect a response. The best way to hear God’s voice is just to keep listening until He speaks. Many times, we don’t hear God’s voice because we aren’t expecting or waiting for a response. When you’ve eliminated other distractions, you have time to just sit and listen to God.
Do not limit how you hear God’s voice.
God speaks to us first through Scripture. He has given us His inspired, infallible word as the biggest piece in understanding who He is. The Bible is our starting place in our pursuit of a personal relationship with God. It is His revelation to us because He loves us.
Knowing Scripture is our starting point, and there are so many ways to hear God’s voice. God speaks through circumstances or events in our lives, and He can also speak audibly or in the quiet voice of the Holy Spirit within us.
God is infinite, and there are infinite ways He can get our attention.
He spoke to Moses by burning bush and to Balaam through a donkey. He spoke audibly to Saul on the road to Damascus. The God we serve today is the same God from those Scriptures, and He’s powerful enough to speak audibly to you.
Learn to recognize the voice of God when you hear it.
Scripture promises if we belong to God, we “hear what God says” (John 8). When we listen for God’s voice and allow Him to lead us, we will hear His voice and know His voice.
Not all visions or dreams are the voice of God. Not all thoughts come from Him. It is important for us to be able to practice discernment and grow in our ability to recognize the voice of God when we hear it.
Here are 5 questions that will help you as you grow your ability to recognize the voice of God:
- Does it exalt Christ?
- Does it line up with scripture?
- Do other mature Christians confirm it?
- Does it produce good fruit? Does it produce life or death in those who receive it?
- Does God cause it to actually happen?
Dive deeper into these questions with our FREE DEVOTIONAL: How Do I Know if It’s Really God Speaking.
Be doers of the Word, not just hearers.
Listening prayer leads to ministry. Our job is not just to be people who know how to hear God’s voice. When we hear the voice of God, we are called to action.
We are ambassadors for God, and we are called to speak on His behalf to others. Many of us don’t understand the importance or power that this responsibility holds. We often default into the mode of doing good works, but our duty as followers of Christ goes beyond this.
To not just be people who absorb God’s words and sit around saturated with evidence of His power and love, we have to move out of the passive, quiet posture. We have to get out into the world and tell people what God is saying. We have to get out and share the Gospel’s message of Hope and God’s love.
Being part of a local ministry or going on a mission trip is so important. When we are actively working in ministry, we rid ourselves of our agenda to focus on His agenda, fulfilling the Great Commission.
Learn How to Hear God’s Voice in Your Daily Life
If you want to grow more in your ability to hear God’s voice in your daily life, we’d love to be part of that journey with you.
The World Race provides you an opportunity to step away from it all and go deep with God. You can learn how to hear God’s voice and serve others and you fully rely on Him to direct your path. Find the best route for you here!