Can You Hear God's Voice?
How to Recognize the Leading of the Holy Spirit
The sheep that are My own
hear and are listening to My voice; and I know them, and they follow
Me. ~John 10:27 (AMP)
As Christians, we all want to
hear God's voice. We are His
sheep, and we long to know which way our Sheppard is leading us.
But, so many of us feel as if we are in life all alone. Sheppard-less
sheep, wandering aimlessly without any direction at all.
Though that is what Satan would like for us all to believe, thankfully
it is just not so!
God has given you a very special gift - The Holy Spirit.
Says that He sent His Spirit "to be in close fellowship with
you" (John 16:7 AMP). That means
that God wants you to be able to hear His voice
today just like Adam and Eve heard Him in the garden of Eden.
This short Bible study can help you begin to hear God's voice so that you
can follow where His Holy Spirit is leading you. If
you are looking for something a bit more in-depth, I'd recommend
this powerful audio class on how you can hear the voice of God for
God Speaks To Us In Different Ways
Many times we miss out on hearing God's voice because we don't know how
He speaks. Here are just a few ways that God can speak to you.
- Through His
Word. I find that many Christians want God to
speak to them, but they have not even taken the time to find out what
He has already said! God has already spoken to you, and His
words are written down in the Bible.
When you go to God in
prayer before you begin reading your Bible, He can make the words on
the pages seem more alive than ever before. He can speak
to you about the unique situation that you are facing today through
something He said thousands of years ago. He is just that
- Through other
Christians. Now, this is a tricky one.
God can speak to us through other believers, but that does
not mean that everything another Christian says to you is a word from
God confirms His Word by repetition. If you have
only heard a message once, that does not mean it is a special word to
you from the Lord.
But, if you are receiving the same message over and over from
various sources, then that may be the voice of God speaking to you
through one of His chosen vessels.
You can always pray and ask God to confirm it again to ensure you are
- Through His
still small voice. In 1 Kings 19, we read about
Elijah hearing the voice of God.
windstorm hit the
It was such a terrible blast that the rocks were torn loose,
but the Lord was not in the wind.
After the wind there was an
but the Lord was not in the earthquake.
earthquake there was a fire,
but the Lord was not in the fire.
after the fire there was the sound of a gentle whisper...
-1Kings 19:11b-12 (NLT)
I love the way this scripture
starts off with these loud booming sounds. That is often what
we expect when we are waiting to hear from God. But those
loud sounds were not where God's voice was heard.
does not yell when He speaks with us. And you usually will
not hear it in your natural ear. When you
really hear God's voice, it will be like a whisper deep within
It will not force you to obey, and is all too easy to
God is a gentleman. If you are waiting for
a loud clap of thunder, you
may very well miss Him.
- Through a
gently tug. Sometimes you actually hear God's
voice, but other times you may just sense a little tug.
Something inside of you senses that a particular
decision is the right way to go.
It's not necessarily logical, or what you would normally
decide. But, for some reason, you sense a certain peace about
it. This peace
comes from the Holy Spirit. When you follow this
peace, you can never go wrong!
But, you must be sure that it
is really the peace of God, and not just your emotions. Just
because you are happy about something does not mean it is God's will
for your life. Pray and ask God to
confirm that what you are sensing is really His will for you, and not
just your own.
The Top 3 Reasons Christian's Can't Hear God's
I once heard a wise Christian man say, God is always broadcasting.
It is just that, sometimes, we aren't tuned in to the right
Here are the top 3 reasons why Christians don't hear God's voice, even
though He is trying to speak. The final reason is definitely
#3. They think that
prayer is a one sided conversation.
Many Christians talk
to God, but they never stop to hear God's
voice after they are done. They simply say what is on their
mind, and then go on with the rest of their day without ever stopping
to listen for a reply.
Whenever you pray, stop, close your eyes, and be silent for a few
afterwards. Allow time for God to join in on your
#2. Their lives are too
Often times the reason that we can not
hear God's voice is because we have allowed our lives to become too
hectic. We have picked up too many responsibilities that God
has not called us to pick up, and we have crowded Him out.
We have to remember Martha and Mary. Martha was busy in the
kitchen trying to prepare a nice meal for the Lord, doing what she
thought was the right thing to do. But, Mary had decided to
down and take a seat at the Lord's feet.
while Martha was "worried and upset over all these
is only one thing worth being
discovered it" (Luke 10:38-42 NLT).
Take more time out to be like Mary. Designate a
particular time each day as your time with the Lord.
not have to be long. Even 5 or 10 minutes of your lunch time
spent praying in your car can quiet your life down enough to hear
2: Begin praying over all of your obligations -
Even the ones that feel "mandatory." Find out which ones God
has no desire for you to do, and begin trading in a busy life for a
productive life that allows time for the Lord.
After all, Jesus said your private life with Him is the only thing
worth being concerned about anyway.
#1. They doubt that what
they are hearing is really the Lord,
so they ignore it.
This is something that most
Christians are guilty of, and they don't even realize it!
Just a few days ago, I had lost my driver's license. I
prayed for God to show me where it was. He told me, but the
place He said seemed so odd that I figured I had made it up myself!
Eventually, after looking in a few other places, I did a half-hearted
scan where He told me to look, and missed it. When He
told me to look again, I still thought it was just me making it up.
But, there it was, folded up inside of a piece of paper,
buried somewhere I would have never looked!
I had to laugh at myself. But, we all do these kinds of thing
everyday. Then we say things like "Something told me to look
there!" or "I felt like I was supposed to fill in the blank
but I didn't."
Of course we all have more serious decisions to make than where to look
for a diver's license. And, sometimes stepping out and
following the still small voice of God can be frightening.
No one wants to make a mistake, especially when there is a lot at
stake. But, having faith
is never easy. And that is exactly what it takes to follow
leading of the Holy Spirit.
Something that helped me to step out on faith and follow the voice of
God was when I finally caught hold of an important fact.
He [God] Himself has said,
I will not in any way fail you nor give you up
nor leave you without support.
[I will] not, [I will] not,
[I will] not in any degree leave you helpless
nor forsake nor let [you] down
(relax My hold on you)! [Assuredly not!]
...we take comfort and are encouraged
and confidently and boldly say, The
Lord is my Helper;
I will not be
seized with alarm
[I will not fear or dread or be terrified].
I finally realized that,
since I was trying to be obedient, God was not
going to loose His hold on me. No matter how big of a mistake
that I make, if I do it because I am
trying to follow Him, it is never too big for Him to fix.
looking at your heart (1 Samuel 16:7). If it is turned
towards Him, He
will always protect you - Even from your mistakes.
Now, another issue that many Christians struggle with is being able
to tell God's leading from their own personal desires and emotions.
This is something that is very important because our goal is
be Spirit lead. So, we want to be sure we are not allowing
own feelings about a matter to color the Word from God that we are
You Hear God's Voice?
to Recognize the Leading of the Holy Spirit
- Do you ever pray before you read your Bible?
Do you think it can help you to hear from God through the
scriptures more if you pray first?
- Have you ever experienced any of the top 3 reasons
why Christians can't hear God's voice? If so, which ones?
How can you help yourself not to fall into those traps in the
- Can you think of other reasons why Christians can't
hear God's voice?
- In this lesson, I told a funny story about how I
missed hearing God's voice. Have you ever had an experience
where you thought you were hearing from God, but you were not sure?
What was the experience like?