Thursday, August 30, 2012

Hearing God's Voice

Romans 8:30
Act 10:1-6
If God is guiding our decisions, calling, justifying, and glorifying us, how do we hear His voice to follow the path He wants us to follow? I recently was asked by a friend how she is to know what God wants her to do in a very difficult situation. She's struggling and wants to follow God's leadership, knowing that He truly does see what's best for her and can guide her better than any human, but not really knowing how to hear His voice. I listened to her and prayed for her but I couldn't tell her what she wanted to hear. In this particular case, she is coming to God out of her need. While it's good to come to God whatever the circumstances are, she's had plenty of opportunity recently and been advised by several friends recently that she needs to come to God every day, not only in desperation. Now that she needs to hear God's voice she doesn't know how to because she hasn't been practicing that skill day in and day out throughout the last several months and years. I'm sure God will still help and guide her, but it will be more difficult because she won't have the reassurance of recognizing clearly which guidance is from Him and which is not.
The best, most reliable way I know of to hear God's voice, His guidance for our lives, is to pray every day. Some prayers may be more ideal than others (inasmuch as they're more complete: praise, thanksgiving, repentance, supplication, meditation, as opposed to a 30-second "God, please help me!" and nothing more). But any prayer is a good beginning and can grow into much more. Each and every prayer is an interaction with God. Each and every one helps our relationship with Him grow. Each and every one helps us recognize His voice when He does speak to guide our decisions. If you want to know how to hear His wisdom in difficult situations, then foster a relationship with Him during ordinary life. Pray day in and day out. Practice listening to Him when life is easy. It can still be difficult to recognize His guidance when we encounter challenges, but not nearly as difficult as not knowing what His voice sounds like at all.

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