Discerning the Voice of God
What a dilemma we put ourselves in! We pray, we hear a voice or sense something out of the ordinary, and instead of trusting God, we find ourselves doubting whether God can or is responding to us, and then we wonder whether it is simply our own voices running through our mind. You are not alone! At some point we all do that, but rest assured you are in good company! Take a minute to read 1 Samuel 3:2-10 .
I find it both interesting and comforting to know that Samuel, a great prophet of the Old Testament, did not recognize the voice of the Lord when he first heard Him speak. Perhaps you, like Samuel do not recognize the Lord's voice when He speaks to you.
There is a download on the sidebar entitled " 10 ways to Discern the Voice of God" (please look at that when you have a moment.). Today we will discuss the first three on that list and in the next few weeks, we will continue.
First let me tell you that Jesus is not going to sit right in front of you and tell you the things he wants you to know, but He will use your mind, which He created to speak words of truth to you. Remember,ultimately the only way God CAN speak to you is through your mind. So let's begin to figure out how you can become familiar with His voice.
(#1, 2 and 3 go hand in hand.)
#1. You hear or sense something that YOU never would have thought of on your own.
This is important because we are often seeking answers when we pray. Many times our so-called solutions are not practical at all, but rather solutions which are ultimately designed to benefit ourselves. When you truely turn to the Lord, you may immediatly find wonderful solutions which had never occured to you or you may discover unlikely (or unwelcome!) answers or solutions. The Lord will show you His way. While sometimes His ways are hard to accept or understand, in the long run you will most likely be pleasantly surprised by His wisdom!
#2. The words are spoken with love and gentleness.
God will not speak harshly to you. Even when He is telling you things you do not want to hear, He does it with a gentle hand and heart. (I have found this to be a wonderful lesson in humility). He has a way of letting you know that while you may have disappointed Him, or done something wrong, He still loves you dearly. You will begin to know and sense that He is with you and will continue to be with you as you follow His course.
#3 The words are truthful.
God will ONLY speak truth to you. He will NEVER say something to you that is against His will. This is clearly one way to distinguish between the words of the Lord and the words of Satan. Without getting into another topic I would simply suggest that when you open yourself up to hear the Lord, you should remember that the prince of this world would like nothing more than to interfere and distract you from drawing closer to Jesus.
Remember that while you may not like everything the Lord asks you to do, ultimately, in your heart, you will know they are things which are morally correct and filled with grace, compassion and love. That is His way. He does not deviate from His character.
Finally, for today, I would simply encourage you to trust the Lord. He can and will speak to you in some way if you patiently wait and believe in His power and understand His deep desire to be in a relationship with you.
In the next week, if you hear His voice or sense His presence, enjoy it. Believe it. Trust it. Stop analyzing and questioning everyting. Allow Him to be with you and allow Him to guide you. You will be so surprized at what you begin to discover!
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