Does God speak?
Yes, the Bible says so. Now that we have an answer ‘yes’, there are also immediate questions popping up in regard to that –
To whom does God speak? Does God speak to everyone?
How does His voice sound like?
How holy you need to be to hear the voice of God?
Born and brought up in a family that fears God, I too had similar questions coming up in my mind. I grew with a thought that God speaks only to specific people who are holy or worthy enough to hear Him. Later, a question arose in my heart – when He is my Father, how come He doesn’t speak to His son? Here in the world, we do not call it a relation if there is no continual conversation between a father and a son. And being a good Father, how can God be silent without speaking to His sons, and that too everyday!
Psalm 139:17 says, ”How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God! How great is the sum of them!” But how can we know and understand His great and extremely unimaginable thoughts unless He communicates with us. Bible records God’s speaking to His children through many ways. He spoke with a loud roaring voice at Mount Zion and with a little whisper to little Samuel. He spoke through the prophets to some, and through dreams and visions some others. He spoke His wrath through the nature, and His loving care through the miracles. In all these incidents we see God desiring to let us know His heart for us.
BUT WHO CAN HEAR HIS VOICE?
Jesus says in John 10:27, ”My sheep hear My voice . . . and they follow Me.” So simple and clear. If you are the sheep of God, you can and will hear His voice.
HOW DOES GOD’S VOICE SOUND LIKE?
Psalmist describes God’s voice as a mighty sound (68:33). John describes God’s voice as a sound like many waters (Revelation 1:15). However you describe it, I believe God speaks certainly in a way we can understand. 1 Kings 19:11-12 gives us an encouraging idea of how God’s voice sounds like. In the 12th verse God’s voice is described as a STILL SMALL VOICE. It is as if God is speaking to us in gentle whispers. Certainly this is not the only way that God speaks at all times, but this is the one where He is in a continual conversation with us. The spirit of God residing in us speaks to us in gentle whispers, flashing thoughts and unexpected promptings. However identifying the voice of God is crucial to have ears that can hear Him.
THE 3 SOURCES OF THOUGHTS and their NATURE in hearing the voice of GOD:
– thoughts from God (loving & encouraging)
– thoughts of our own (logical)
– from the enemy (destructive)
Here is one clear example how this would be: Everyone knows that we are supposed to wear a helmet while driving a two-wheeler (it is many times compulsory in few cities in India). But most of us don’t like wearing it too. The moment we take our bike out, our inner voice prompts us to put on the helmet warning us that we may be fined. And then, the following thoughts creep into our mind:
1. There may not be any cops on that day.
2. Not all people are following it, so we can take an exception.
3. And even if someone tries to catch us, we may escape and slip off.
Now examine all these thoughts. If the first thought to wear a helmet can be of God, then the logical ones follows to support our desire or wish where as the final one from the enemy tells us that we can run off, or no one can catch us. Things like this happen in our normally everyday life too. (This illustration is just used to make the readers understand)
This is how we can differ between the thoughts or promptings or little whispers of God from our own thoughts and the thoughts of the enemy. So, listening to His gentle promptings, His small voice depends completely upon our relation with Him. A person who is led by God values the thoughts of God. A person who wants to do His own will goes after his own logical thinking, and a person who is walking against God will follow the thoughts of the enemy.
Dear ones, for now I encourage you to activate your hearing to understand the promptings and the gentle whispers of the Spirit of God residing in us.
Please do check here for the next week’s update for the practical exercise on HOW TO HEAR GOD’S VOICE.