Hearing God

The sheep that are my own hear and are listening to my voice; and I know them, and they follow me.
John 10:27 AMP

Have you ever heard someone say that God told them something and you thought they were crazy? Maybe what they shared sounded unusual or perhaps you have never personally experienced God speaking to you. As we look through scripture, we see God speaking to people regularly through various means. In fact, according to John 10:27 shown above, all of Jesus' followers hear and listen to his voice.

So what does Jesus' voice sound like? How do we know if what we hear is Jesus or something else? Before we look at the answer to those questions, think about someone that is very close to you. It could be one of your parents, your child, your spouse, or your best friend. If they call your name, how do you know it's really them? Why do you automatically recognize their voice? The answer is simple: you have spent so much time talking and listening to them that you easily recognize their voice. The same should be true of our relationship with God. We should spend so much time talking and listening to Him that we can easily recognize His voice when He speaks.

How do we do that? There are a few practical steps that we can take to help us position ourselves to hear God:

1. Fully surrender to Him
We can't hold onto anything that hinders our relationship with God and still expect Him to speak to us. Secret sin, malicious thoughts, unforgiveness, nothing. If we want to hear from God, we have to surrender fully to Him because our sin will hinder Him from listening and speaking to us.

The Lord hasn’t lost his powerful strength; he can still hear and answer prayers. Your sins are the roadblock between you and your God. That’s why he doesn’t answer your prayers or let you see his face.
Isaiah 59:1-2 CEV

2. Take time to listen to Him
Does this sound familiar? You grab your bible and go to a quiet place to spend some quality time with God only to be interrupted. Our world is full of distractions and that is especially true when we try to get alone with God. We have to recognize that these distractions are simply tools of the enemy. Satan does not want us to spend time with Jesus because he knows that it will be greatly beneficial to our spiritual development and he doesn't want that at all. As such, we will have to be deliberate in making the effort to spend time with God. It may require us to get up early while everyone else is still asleep or perhaps we may have to retreat to a quiet place disconnected from the distractions of the world, but whatever we do, we have to take time to get alone with God and hang out with Him. Just think about it, even Jesus took time to slip away and spend time with the Father:

After he had dismissed them, he went up on a mountainside by himself to pray. Later that night, he was there alone,
Matthew 14:23 NIV

3. Expect to hear Him
If we truly believe that God is who He says He is, and we believe that He wants to commune with us, then we should expect to hear God when we spend time with Him. God may speak to us through the bible, He may speak to us through a still small voice, He may speak to us miraculously by an audible voice, dream, or vision, but rest assured that He wants to speak to us. God sent his Son Jesus to give us the opportunity of restored fellowship, and life itself is wrapped up in knowing God on a personal and intimate level.

Now this is eternal life: that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent.
John 17:3 NIV

There is nothing more important than spending time with God and hearing His instructions for our life. Please make the decision today to get alone with God and listen to what He has to say to you.