WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO HEAR GOD’S VOICE?
So hearing the voice of God. What does that mean? How do we hear from God today?
In John 10:27, Jesus says “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me.” Every single believer knows the voice of God, it’s just whether or not they actually attribute it to God.
For most of my life I’ve heard the voice of God very clearly, but it wasn’t until a few years ago that I knew it was Him. But once I had that understanding, everything shifted and it provides you with a new level of confidence in your decisions even if they may not make sense in the eyes of society.
God wants a relationship with you. He wants a relationship with me. But relationships aren’t just on Sundays, he wants a relationship all the time. I heard this great example the other day about how relationships work. You begin as an acquaintance with someone, then you become their friend, then you become best friends. And it’s the same with God.
Right when you get saved you’re in that acquaintance category. Ok I believe in you, I give my life to you, I know a little bit about you, but I’m willing and ready to learn more. Then you hit the friend level, you’re spending more time with him, you’re getting to know His heart, you’re building a connection. Then finally you hit that true intimacy with the Lord, that best friend level, you understand his emotions, you know what He is feeling in situations, and you know how He would respond to the situations around you. That best friend, intimate level is what we were created for. It’s how we bring heaven to earth in all that we do.
So, how do you get there?
Well you spend time with Him. Spend time in the Word. Knowing the Bible is crucial. Spend time in worship. Spend time in prayer. Spend time in silence. Expecting for Him to speak.
And then listen. Half of communication is listening.
In the Old Testament God spoke audibly a lot of the time and He still can today obviously, but things are a little different. Now we have the Holy Spirit inside of us and he’s constantly wanting to be in communication with us.
In the Bible there are two Greek words for the word “word”. The first is logos, which is the inspired Word of God and also a name for Jesus who is the Living Word. Then this other, second Greek word we see in Scripture is rhema. The rhema word of God. This is more of a whisper from the Holy Spirit on what we are supposed to do and how Scripture relates to the here and now. It’s God speaking in the moment. So sometimes you may receive a rhema word from God that directs you to a certain passage of Scripture that applies to your current situation.
So the way that God speaks is different for everyone, but a lot of the times it’s a still small whisper, it’s a gut feeling, you just know in your knower. For some people it’s a thought that just rushes in and it’s nowhere close to what you had been thinking about. Sometimes it’s a dream. Sometimes it’s a picture that you see either with your eyes open or your eyes closed. Sometimes it’s a sense of peace or joy that covers your body in a moment of chaos. Sometimes it’s wisdom in a situation.
And sometimes God speaks to you for your, for what you’re going through, sometimes He speaks to you for someone else, sometimes He just shares things that He wants you to pray about.
One thing I will say is that when sharing with others about what God has shared with you, a great way to phrase it is, “I feel like God told me” or “I’m sensing that God is saying” dot dot dot. Because if you make claims that God said something and you’re wrong, well that could mess up someone else’s relationship with God. And you don’t want to be accountable for that.
At the end of the day what all of it boils down to is that He just wants to be in communication with you the way that He originally intended for it to be. It’s not a weird thing. It’s literally what you were created for.
So spend time with Him, spend time in the Word, spend time in prayer, spend time in silence. And listen. He wants to speak to you.