I know a lot of Christians get frustrated about this subject of hearing God's voice. I remember when I was a young Christian and older ministers would say, "The Lord told me this" or "The Lord told me that," and I would think, What do you mean,"The Lord told you"? Did He just talk to you? Did you hear Him out loud? How did you know it was the Lord?
I would get more than a little irritated with them. But I have since come to learn, after walking with the Lord for a while, that He is the still, small voice that speaks inside my spirit—and He wants to speak to me and guide me even more than I want Him to! He wants to do the same for you. I can tell you that it takes a little practice, but now I hear Him all the time, and He leads me on a daily, even hourly, basis.
The Guide on the Inside
By "practice," I mean that you get into the habit of asking and listening, being aware of His presence in you. When you're on the job,driving your car, walking into a new situation, helping someone or even heading to a social engagement, give ear to the Holy Spirit. Say, "Lord, what shall I do in this situation?" or "Lord, which way should I go?" Start by practicing with small things, like finding something you've misplaced or asking which way to turn while driving, and pretty soon you'll get good at distinguishing His voice.
In other words, look to the inside—to God's Holy Spirit within you. The Holy Spirit is "The guide on the inside," and every born-again believer has Him living within.
The children of God (that means you) are to be led by the Spirit of God (see Rom. 8:14). When Jesus left the earth and went to heaven, He left us His Spirit (the Holy Spirit, or the Spirit of God) to live in us and guide us. John 14:17b says, "You know Him, for He lives with you, and will be in you."
The Amplified Bible calls the Holy Spirit our Comforter, Counselor, Helper, Intercessor, Advocate, Strengthener and Standby. He is everything we need to hear from God. We shouldn't look for anything else, or anyone else, to lead us.
John 10:27 says, "My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me." If you have received Jesus as your Savior, then you are one of His "sheep," and this verse is for you!
Read that verse again -- but this time, imagine Him saying it like this: "You hear My voice, and I know you, and you follow Me." I am not making this up! The Bible says it; therefore it's true.
You Hear Him and Know Him
In my own life, when I saw that Jesus said, "My sheep hear my voice," I started believing I could hear His voice. And if you can hear a voice, you can follow it, right? If a friend of yours calls out to you from across a dark room, "Come this way!" and you hear his or her voice, you can follow the sound until you find your way out. It's the same with hearing the Lord's voice; and the Bible says you do hear it.
So you might as well get into agreement with the Bible and start saying, "I hear His voice and I follow Him."
Too many times I hear Christians saying things like, "I can't hear the voice of God," or "I don't know if God is talking to me or not." But that's not what the Bible says. It says we do hear His voice! It also says we know Him. Jesus Himself said, "I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Counselor, that He may be with you forever: the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, for it does not see Him, neither does it know Him. But you know Him, for He lives with you, and will be in you " (John 14:16-17).
You know Him! When you know someone, you recognize their voice and you know the intent of their heart. It's time to start believing the intent of God's heart toward you is always good and that you do know Him and hear His voice.
Karen Jensen Salisbury has been in ministry over 30 years. Formerly a lead pastor, then an instructor at Rhema Bible College, she is currently an itinerant minister and author of several books. Connect with her on her website, karenjensen.org, on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.
This article originally appeared at karenjensen.org.
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