HEARING FROM GOD
WHY SHOULD WE SEEK TO HEAR FROM GOD?
Proverbs 8:33-36: (NIV) ‘Listen to my instruction and be wise; do not ignore it. Blessed is the man who listens to me, watching daily at my doors, waiting at my doorway. For whoever finds me finds life and receives favour from the LORD. But whoever fails to find me harms himself….”
WHY should we seek God and hear from Him? Sometimes in our ministry, breakthrough is needed. God waits for us to seek
Him, to give His confirmation or revelation or breakthrough. But
how do we tune in to the leading and strategies of the Holy Spirit in order to
It is worth noting that in 2 Samuel 5v17-25 King David was given
a first strategy for success in war, but when he sought the Lord again, he was
given a different strategy for success. We need to hear from God regularly!
2 Chronicles 26:5: (NIV) ‘He sought God during the days of Zechariah, who instructed him in the fear of God. As long as he sought the LORD, God gave him success.’
HOW CAN WE HEAR FROM GOD? ....for our church, family, work, ministry, personal need, etc? Below is not an exhaustive list, but it may help you in hearing from God.
1. We can hear from God via scripture: a) The
‘logos’ written set scripture – the word of God, the Bible. b) The ‘rhema’ word, i.e. scripture inspired
and quickened by the Holy Spirit as relevant to the ‘now’ situation.
Personally, I hear far more from Father God through the
daily reading of the Bible and the Holy Spirit’s highlighting of verses or passages
than any other way of hearing from God.
(Reading daily a ‘Through the Bible in a year’ course, and other scripture helps like ‘Word for Today’ or ‘Daily Light’ is useful so we get to know the Bible.)
2. Hearing God through worship & prophecy: Holy Spirit can inspire aspects of the prophetic, be it a prophetic word, tongues & interpretation, or other forms of inspiration…e.g. picture, vision, even inspired dance, etc. NB. Test prophecy: 1 Thessalonians 5:19-21: ‘Do not put out the Spirit's fire; do not treat prophecies with contempt. Test everything. Hold on to the good.’ (Linked with no. 3.)
3. Hearing God through dreams, etc: Including visions, pictures, impressions, etc., whether these come through you or others. God loves to communicate. Those expectant will be rewarded. …..Again not to be taken alone.
NB. Jeremiah 23v28-29: ‘Let the prophet who has a dream tell his dream, but let the one who has my word speak it faithfully. For what has straw to do with grain?" declares the LORD. "Is not my word like fire," declares the LORD, "and like a hammer that breaks a rock in pieces?”
BUT, a vision given to intercessors to persevere in prayer showed a wall that took 40 blows of a sledgehammer to bring it down. (cf Isaiah 30:13-14). The Word and Spirit will agree.
4. Hearing God through circumstances: When circumstances begin to line up….not to be acted on alone. God uses finances to get our attention!
5. Hearing God through the ‘leading’ of the Spirit. A sense of His leading in a situation…. in conjunction with other streams of confirmation.
6. Hearing God through other people: Preaching (Rom 10v17: ‘Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.’) Those in spiritual authority over you. Also, your spouse! Also written Christian articles & books, advice, counsel, chance comments which fit your situation.
7. Hearing from God through the Holy Spirit’s ‘PEACE’: a) A sense of ‘rightness’ about it. b) Peace in your spirit c) The witness of others involved, in their spirits. One of the best lasting confirmations.
If you have need of hearing from God: Give Him time and space to speak to you. Why not arrange a short ‘retreat’ (often actually an advance) - even half a day with no agenda but to be with God and hear from Him for your situation? A retreat could be in a room in own home but usually too many distractions. Retreat Centre (Anglican ‘Katafiyio’ room at Angels Hills donation basis. OR a library, a friend’s home /room, your church facility…etc.
PREPARE by worship, praise, thanksgiving…maybe a CD or mobile. Pray to God…let Him know what is on your mind. Get it all out! Must have access to a Bible. Daily readings and helps….He often speaks. Go for a walk. Look around. (e.g. ‘Seasons’). Maybe get into a Christian book you have been meaning to read. Maybe a bit of art or creative work. Be open and in faith, ready for Him to communicate. (Quote by Blaise Pascal – from Word for Today UCB): “All of man’s troubles stem from his inability to sit quietly in a room alone.”
NB. Fasting and prayer are
keys to unlocking. ….we show God we mean business. We are hungry to hear.
Living rightly before God: Isaiah 59v2b (NIV): 'Your sins have hidden His face from you, so that He will not hear.'
On your return, take further time with God to mull these things over: Never be hasty.....the Spirit leads rather than drives. Listening for His counsel.
You believe you have counsel from God for a new situation? Then, check / test by the ‘counsel of many advisors’ (Proverbs 15v22). E.g. Ministry leaders, church elders, parents, older or more experienced believers, etc.
John 16v13-14: “….when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what He hears, and He will tell you what is yet to come. He will bring glory to me by taking from what is mine and making it known to you.