How’s your hearing?
Doctor, I think I’m going deaf!
What are the symptoms?
It’s a show about a little yellow family,
but what has that got to do with my problem?
One of the most common questions I am asked by youth or adults is: ‘How do I hear from God?’
It is a GREAT question.
I have been following Jesus for over a decade now, and there have been moments where I have asked friends, youth pastors, and mentors the same question. There have been times in my life where I feel like I have been banging my head against a wall of deafness unable to hear the words of God, asking life’s big questions like:
Where should I live?
Should I study?
What career will I choose?
Should I get married?
Do I want kids?
What is my purpose?
Is there more to life than Netflix?
In the questions of life, big and small, how do you hear from God?
I want to give you 3 simple truths that have helped me and helped others hear the voice of God on a daily basis. As a Christian, hearing the voice of God is one of the most awesome experiences, and without a shadow of a doubt will increase your faith, and bring others into faith.
Before we read ahead, let me encourage you to pause, pray, and ask God to speak to you now. Simply ask “God, help me hear you.”
Okay let’s crack on!
In John 10:27, Jesus says ‘My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me.’
3 Simple Truths:
YOU ARE KNOWN ‘I know them’
YOU LISTEN ‘My sheep listen to my voice’
YOU FOLLOW ‘They follow me’
When listening for God’s voice it helps to believe that God already knows you, and wants to speak to you. Jesus says that from this place, you should listen, and then follow what he speaks.
So here’s a few ways that you can put these truths into practise, to help you hear from God more:
(1) BE EXPECTANT.
Every morning I pray: “God I expect you to move in big ways today because you are a big God. Holy Spirit please fill me today and help me be the person you have called me today. Make me brave. Help me listen. Amen.”
(2) REMOVE DISTRACTION.
Do you have a place every day where you spend time speaking and listening to God? Often we can get so distracted, but deliberately set a time and space aside to have with God. For me it’s in the car on the way to work. I don’t turn my music on, I pray the prayer above and then sit in silence and allow God to speak. These times can be called sabbath. We are going to explore what that means and how to practise it next month.
(3) RESPOND IN FAITH TO HIS PROMPTS.
God has never spoken to me in a booming voice, but often I get thoughts, stories, pictures, or memories flood into my head as I ask God to speak. Often these are things I haven’t been thinking of and sometimes can seem random. However, when God speaks, it is always in accordance to his character and his Word. God wouldn’t tell you to steal your friends i-Phone or support the Edmonton Oilers! Oh wait, he might… there was that thing about ‘last shall be first.’ Oilers might actually be his team!
Story time: I was driving out to a senior high camp to speak, the journey was roughly an hour so I had a good amount of time to sit and chat with God. I asked God if there was anybody at the camp that he wanted to heal. All of a sudden a bunch of random thoughts came into my head: extreme lower back pain, recurring nightmares, a painful right shoulder, and a sore pinky! I was like, ‘Okay God, some of these are weird, but I’m willing to ask and pray for people.’ So I got to the camp, and after finishing up the message I shared that I had been chatting with God in the car and believed that he had shown me some areas of pain that he wanted to heal. So I began sharing them… one guy stood for a painful right shoulder, two kids stood for extreme lower back pain, one girl responded to the nightmares and nobody responded for the pinky (I obviously heard that wrong… probably indigestion after a venti caramel macchiato!)
Honestly, I was surprised. I was surprised that God spoke and I heard him! Isn’t that crazy?! It was what I was praying for in the first place!
What was really cool is that the following week I managed to catch up with one of the girls with extreme lower back pain. She was a gymnast but had to quit because of the pain she was feeling. When I spoke with her she said, “Chris, you won’t believe it! Since we prayed last week, I have had NO back pain!”
When God speaks it’s because he wants to do something! He wants to bless, love, give and be glorified! Ask God what he wants to speak to you today! Be expectant, remove distraction, listen and follow his prompts!
Your friend, Chris.
When we don’t pray, we often don’t hear Jesus clearly. It’s like Bad Lip Reading…