This past weekend, we looked at the question: How do you hear the voice of God? And, we began by realizing not only how important it is to hear God speaking to us, but also the huge diversity of ways in which God speaks. We did a quick overview of some of these ways…
- Through Scripture
- Through the Holy Spirit
- Through the stirring of hearts
- Through conscious, desires, wants
- Through signs, symbols, miracles
- Through angels, visions, dreams
- Through creation, reason, rationality
- Through other people
- …and lots of other ways!
The point is, God speaks. And, when He does, He does so in a diverse and multiple of ways.
The question is: How do you know it’s God? If God can speak to you through music (and He can), how do you know it’s God and not the music moving you? How do you know that your thoughts are from God and not just yourself?
Well, we looked at three keys to discerning the voice of God…
1. SOUNDS LIKE JESUS
First, the voice of God sounds like Jesus. This is just really clear in Hebrews 1:1-2. God speaks in the language of Jesus. God is “Jesusy.” So, if the voice, thought, direction, or action your thinking about doesn’t look, live, or love like Jesus, then it isn’t from God.
2. GROUNDED IN SCRIPTURE
Second, you need to get grounded in Scripture to learn what the voice of Jesus sounds like. God will never direct you in a way that is contrary to the Bible. So, in order to learn His voice, get grounded in Scripture, read the Gospels especially, and focus in on Jesus.
3. CONFIRMED IN COMMUNITY
Third, seek to have the direction God gives to you confirmed in community. Truthfully, the way you learn the voice of God is through others. It’s by allowing others, who know the voice of God, to help, lead, guide, and train you to know His voice too. So, listen and seek to discern His will, but then get it confirmed in community.
So, our main point is simple: God is speaking, so start listening. And, we encouraged everyone to do that this week.
To close, I gave a few personal points that I have found helpful…
a) Persevere in seeking to hear and learn God’s voice. While it can be hard, it is worth it.
b) It starts off hard, but it does get easier. The more you get to know God, the clearer His voice becomes.
c) Pay attention to the voice that is most compassionate and kind, because that is often God. When God speaks, He is a God of love, and often compassion is a clue that it’s God.
With that, I gave everyone the challenge: Listen and respond to the voice of God. Because, that’s what we need to do if we are going to learn to follow and change lives with God.