Have you been trying to listen to God, but struggling to hear his voice? Maybe you believe God speaks, yet for some reason it seems he's not saying much.
Hearing God's voice is one of our foundational values in YWAM. In other words, it's a driving force rooted deeply in our DNA. We never would've come this far if it weren't for his clearly spoken direction.
If you find yourself striving to hear God, you've come to the right place. We've got some helpful tools for you to press into a more intimate relationship with God. The only thing you need to start is to be willing and open.
Like anything, learning to hear God's voice takes practice, so let this be the start of something incredible!
"My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me.I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one will snatch them out of my hand." (John 10:27-28)
Spend quality time with God
One of the best ways to start learning how to hear God's voice is to spend quality time with him every day. God is speaking all the time but often we're simply too busy to stop and listen. Be careful to not forget to plan moments of solitude with him.
God loves to sit and speak with us, and he's always there for a conversation. But don't let that be your excuse for not spending intentional time with him. After all, intentional time alone with a friend is usually much more enjoyable than when you're multitasking.
What does "intentional" time alone with God look like? For many it means time to journal, read the Bible, and even sit in silence. Try starting with 15 minutes every day devoted to reading his word, journaling your thoughts, and listening to some worship music. Increase that time as you feel, but remember, be intentional!
Meditate on scripture
Have you ever been reading the Bible, and suddenly you come across a passage that seems to jump right off the page? Could it be that God placed it before you in that exact moment so you can be deeply impacted by it?
Take those moments slowly and meditate on the words God is clearly speaking to you. Write them out, memorize them, and think of them throughout the day. Let God’s powerful words continually wash over you throughout whatever season of life you're in.
Ask questions, then listen
Has someone ever asked you a question but didn't wait for you to answer? It's so easy to do the same thing with God!
God wants us to ask him questions (Isaiah 1:18). Have you every asked God what he thinks of you? Give it a try! Ask him to speak to you personally, to make it clear to you what he's trying to communicate.
What do you do next? You wait, listen, and trust.
Sit in the silence, then write your thoughts down as they begin to come to your mind. How do you know it’s God? With everything that you hear, confirm it with God’s character. God is truth. He's an encourager. He's a kind, good, loving Father. Do the words you feel he spoke to you line up with those things? If so, then trust and believe that it was God!
If you feel that God hasn't been speaking to you for a while, a good thing to do is ask yourself "what’s the last thing God asked me to do?" When we display our trust in God by our obedience, it brings us closer in intimacy with God. And it's exactly that—intimacy—that increases your ability to recognize his voice above the others.
Did God tell you to share an encouraging word with someone? Do you need to ask for forgiveness from a friend or family member? Perhaps you feel like God is asking you to stop watching a certain show, listening to certain music, or unfollow someone on Instagram that's slowly drawing you away from him.
Whatever it is that God speaks, this is the key: hear, obey, and don't give up.
Invite him into every area of your life
God isn’t just your "Sunday" God, your "small group" God, or your "20-minutes-in-the-morning" God. He wants to come into every single area of our lives—the best parts, the hard parts, the painful parts, all of it.
When you begin to hold things from God, believing you know best, that "banging cymbal" of your own voice drowns out his loving voice and in turn, his perfect plans for your life. So let it go and lay it all down.
This can be uncomfortable, and difficult, but that’s okay! Trust that God really does have your best in mind.
Jesus is the great Shepherd. As you learn more about him, you'll hear his voice clearer and clearer. He has something to teach you in every season, and even in the one you're in right now.
Did this blog encourage you? Why not take a step further and spend 6 months diving deeper into a relationship with a God who speaks to you?