Is your life a walk with God or a walk with a strategic plan? Is it an adventure of faith or a blueprint you put together? I’ve learned that God does not give us all the details BUT He delights to communicate direction, edification, and comfort! Most people fail to engage in the dialogue and treat the Lord like the only thing He has to say is a chapter and verse in the Bible. The most powerful life is the life that combines aspects of diligent preparation, reflection, and supernatural direction.
Everything we do in the Kingdom involves an aspect of faith. Without faith, it is impossible to please God. Therefore the first thing you need to settle is the fact that God really does want to speak to you! The second concept ties in closely to the first, namely, you can hear God’s voice! One verse settles the matter – “My sheep hear my voice…” (John 10:27).
If you are a believer, you can hear. I was once blown away by the comment someone made claiming they could prove that God speaks to everyone, including those who do not know Him or believe in Him. They pointed out that every believer was an unbeliever at the moment they heard God’s invitation to put their faith in Jesus. That’s clearly true. If I could not hear God I never would have gotten saved. If unbelievers become believers by hearing Him, how much more should those that are now believers keep on hearing Him now that they know Him?
Key #1 – Get yourself a journal or notebook. Preferably a new one.
Key #2 – Choose a quiet place where there are no distractions or interruptions – no phones, no people. Early morning or the quiet at the end of the day is often best for this special time with God.
Key #3 – “Be Still.” You cannot approach this conversation in the rush and busyness of the week. Relax, cease striving, rest and wait as you do this process. Refresh the screen of your mind like you would a computer. Many find their way into the Holy of Holies similar to the path taken by David of old. His pathway into this dialogue was often paved by song. Here is where the Bible says, “making melody in your hearts to the Lord” (Colossians 3:16) and turning your gaze and song upward.
Key #4 – There is a protocol to entering the presence of any great King. We are admonished to “enter His gates with Thanksgiving in your heart.” In a very practical way this means that you need to turn your attention from what is not working to what is working. Inventory all the good that has been given to you. Rehearse audibly, perhaps in your own song, all that you are most thankful for at this moment of your life. The ideal end state is one where your soul can be at peace – still, quieted and coming from a place of gratitude.
GOD’S VOICE IS SMALL AND QUIET.
Key #5 – This is perhaps the most important concept – you do not need to expect God’s voice to be thunderous or loud. The Prophet Elijah referred to it as “a still small voice.”
When God speaks it is often subtle and its sound is often not so very different from the sound of your own. Recognize that God’s voice most often comes as spontaneous thoughts which light upon your mind – gently, almost quietly engaging the thoughts you are having as if walking alongside in a conversation. Picture the image of a dove landing rather than a flash of lightening. This is not to say that God’s communication cannot be dramatic and distinct, but it is to say that in my experience it is often missed or lost because of lack. I did not discern the need to be “still” and heed the “small” sound because my loudness and busyness drove the “still small voice” of the dove away.
Key #6 – The Prophet Habakkuk said, “I will stand my watch,” (this was probably in the evening) “and watch to see what He will say to me …” Then the Lord answered him and said, “Write the vision and make it plain on tablets …” (Habakkuk 2:1-2). Recognize that God also speaks in impressions, images, pictures and vision. The eyes of your heart are able to see.
The art of “seeing’ seems to be similar to the secret of “hearing.” Namely, shifting gears from “doing” something in God’s presence to simply “being” in God’s presence. Enter the stillness of the moment without driving the flow of impressions, but “waiting” to “see” and “hear” what your Creator wants to communicate. We can “see what He will say” when we allow images from heaven to come as spontaneous pictures which light upon our minds. These can easily be pushed aside if we dismiss them because they don’t make sense or if we are preoccupied with a multitude of business.
Ok, here is the final key:
Key #7 – Write down the flow of images and thoughts that arise, and do so uncritically, suspending judgment. Forget grammar, forget spelling and avoid excessive theological evaluation. There will be an opportunity to discern, refine and shift your answers out later. But at this moment we are exercising faith for God to put something into our fisherman’s net. Jesus taught that the kingdom is like a net that caught all kinds of fish. After it was dragged to shore the fish could be separated into categories, good and bad. So place your pen down on the page and simply start to write the faintest impression.
Ask God to show you what you need to run with, and to weed out that which is not of Him. Continue to get to know God, His nature, His heart, share your revelations with trusted friends. Conversing with and hearing God is part of an ongoing relationship with Him. Give yourself time to develop an ear for Him. Continue to get to know Who He is and the more and more obvious it will be to know His voice.
You are precious sheep. And God wants to speak to YOU!