My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me.~John 10:27 ESV
“Does God speak to us? Have you ever heard Him speak to you?”
The first time someone asked me that, I was a new Christian. As a child I had known of God, but I did not know God, and I definitely did not know He spoke to us. When my adult life became unbearable, in a desperate search for healing, I sought Jesus. That’s when my spiritual journey took a turn for the better.
I wanted to know God relationally, so I began by reading the Bible, but understanding it was difficult. A friend suggested I read a simpler version. I also turned to Christian books, music, and television to aid me. Though I read and listened, I still did not hear God speak to me.
Two years into my walk with Christ, someone asked me the question again. My answer again was “No.” Others talked about how they heard God’s voice, so why didn’t I? What was I doing wrong? Although frustrated, giving up wasn’t an option. I wanted to hear my Father’s voice, and I was determined to find out how.
I found the draft of a book I had started to write. Skimming through it, I read about the abuse I’d suffered as a teenager. I had thoughts of wanting to end it all. I got goosebumps reading the next part: As I lay in a fetal position, pills in my hand and tears rushing down my cheeks, I apologized to God for what I was about to do. At that moment, I heard God say, “Your mother needs you.”
It shocked me to see I had heard God’s voice back then. His voice wasn’t audible, but His words had come into my heart. Yet my ears could hear, and my mind could understand.
God had spoken to me long before I had decided to follow Jesus. I didn’t have the Bible and Christian paraphernalia, nor had anyone explained the Christian life to me. All I had was prayer and the knowledge that there is a God. Yet with so little, God still spoke to me, thus preventing me from making a horrible decision. My Father God had saved my life by speaking to my heart.
This revelation made me realize I couldn’t do something that would make me hear from God. There wasn’t a twelve-step program or a list of To-Do’s to follow that would make me hear God’s voice. Rather, when I needed to hear Him, He would speak.
Many people hear God when they cry out from the pit of despair because they’re ready to receive it. At the precise moment as a teenager that I had opened my heart and cried out to God, He spoke to me. Does this mean you have to be in a pit before hearing from God? Of course not. Our hearts only need to be open to receive Him. God speaks to us all the time, every hour of every day, but we are usually so preoccupied with the busyness of life that we aren’t quiet enough to hear Him.
When we read the Bible, we learn about God’s character. Knowing His character opens the way to see His goodness, faithfulness, mercy, and grace. Most importantly, we see His love for us. When we receive His love, our hearts are open enough to hear Him speak to us. If you want to hear from God, find time to be still. Push away from all the busyness. Read your Bible. Talk to God as though He sits next to you. Soon enough, within your heart, you’ll hear Him talk back to you, and it’ll be amazing how much you both have to say.
Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me.~Revelation 3:20 ESV
Friend, you can hear God’s voice. Since He is no respecter of persons, by faith you can receive from Him. Open your heart, cry out to Him, and receive what God has to say to you. You’ll be glad you did.
How can you cultivate a quiet time to pray, read God’s Word, and listen for His voice?
Father God, my life has gotten stuck in the fast-paced busyness of everyday life. I’ve allowed noises from every direction to distract me from hearing Your voice. Remind me to slow down, read Your Word, and listen to Your voice. Amen
Genre: Non-fiction Devotion
Copyright 2023: Does God Speak to Us?: Sandra Stein: All Rights Reserved