Listening to the Voice of God
My reader, Flory R., sent me this email which made me tick:
Today I was reading your answer to Joan about “How do we know there is Heaven?” and it made me think about one question my daughter asked to me. She was playing, and suddenly she said, “Mommy… What do I need to do to listen the voice of God? I want to know how his voice is!” I was shocked, and wasunable to answer her. She is waiting for my answer; what would you answer to her?
¡What a great question, Flory!
Do not all of us long to listen the voice of God? Do we not crave to listen to him face to face, as one listens to a friend, just as the Lord spoke to Moses (Exodus 3:11)? Do we not desire to have the complete confidence that we clearly understand his will; what he is asking of us in our life? Umh, it seems a comment for grown-ups. Sorry, Flory; I’ll come back to your daughter’s answer.
When we talk with God, sometimes we ask him things, and sometimes God asks things of us. Sometimes God answers us very clearly, but often is not so clear.
There are people, like the prophet Samuel when he was a boy; who listened to the voice of God pronouncing his name (1 Samuel 3). My middle kid, Raymond, told me once that he heard the voice of God pronouncing his name.
More often, we do no hear his voice; but some words, ideas, or desires show up very clearly in our minds. If we think that those thoughts can be told to us by Jesus, it may indicate that we are truly listening to God.
However, the clearest way which we have to listen to the Lord, is reading the Bible. His word is alive in the Bible, and is talking to every one of us every day. Sometimes, when we read the Bible, it seems like what we’re reading is a perfect match with what we’re going through in our lives at that time. If we are not sure about what God may be telling us through the Bible, we can ask our parents, teachers, or pastors about it.
God often speaks to us when we pray. If we open our door to him, we’ll be able to understand what he wants us to know. But often, the Lord may use other Christians to let us know his will. Even the circumstances of our life may be the way that the Lord communicates with us.
Finally, there are times when the Lord makes us feel his love intensely, like a consuming fire. There are no words, no voice. But there’s no need for that; it’s better than words! It is the full presence of the Holy Spirit inside us, the more intimate communication, pure love!
It will come a time, Flory, when your daughter will listen to the voice of God like the voice of a friend:
“For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.” (1 Corinthians 13:12)
It will come the time; meanwhile, as the Holy Spirit says: “Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts!” (Hebrews 3:7-8)
Joy and peace, my brothers and sisters,