Hearing God’s voice through the written Word
We often hear believers say they could not hear God’s voice. Especially, at a time when they needed direction, they felt cut off from God, lost in the sea of confusion and anxieties. Yet there are some who could hear God and commune with Him consistently. Is God biased and chooses to connect with some while rejecting others? Is there a technique to hearing God’s voice? However, the Bible says that God is speaking all the time, “For God speaks again and again, though people do not recognise it.” (Job 33:14). The heart of the issue is that people are used to communicating with God only when they needed a solution to their problems but remained aloof pretty much of the time. The fact is there are several levels to hearing God; the most basic level is hearing from God’s written word. In other words, one must begin to hear God by reading and meditating on God’s Word without which there is no progress to communion at a more profound level. At this basic level, the believer familiarises himself with God’s values system and thinking patterns, he also begins to develop an intuitive connection with God; he feels that God is with Him and loves Him. It is here that God gives strength to overcome all kinds of bondages and fear. As the believer continues to meditate on the Word, the communion becomes more profound and sophisticated. At this level, God gives insights into difficult problems, the ability to discern and the strength to take on leadership in his community and company.
Jesus was exceedingly successful and led a glorious life because He diligently heard and saw what the Father was doing and did it in like manner. Jesus watched the Father carefully and consistently and did nothing out of His own initiative. Similarly, in order for us to be successful we have to be able see where God is going and follow Him. Jesus said to Peter, “Follow Me.” (John 21:19). Many made mistakes that set them back financially and caused them to lose precious time and opportunities because they could not recognize God’s ways. They followed their own passions, and ran where the crowd was running. Hence, many lived mediocre lives and was never fully satisfied with where they were. But Jesus as opposed to the Jews never followed trends or popular opinions but He heard the voice of God and did what He saw the Father doing. Jesus is able hear, see and obey because He diligently studied the scriptures for Himself.
How do we see and recognize the ways of God? The key is to read and meditate on every word that is spoken by God. Many practiced selective hearing and preferred to read passages that are easy to understand and listen to popular sermons. They claimed that they could not understand when they read the Word for themselves, yet they could understand the sophisticated commercial contracts that stacked up on their desks. The Jews practiced selective hearing and did not read every word in the scriptures. They said to Jesus, “How can You say, ‘The Son of Man must be lifted up’? Who is this Son of Man?” (John 12:34). They did not know that Jesus must suffer on the cross for the sins of the world as it was clearly written in Isaiah 52. Hence, generations of Jews missed out on the blessings of Christ and suffered severely. They could not believe the words of Jesus because they did not read every word carefully and believe the scriptures as written by Moses. Jesus said to them,
“You search the Scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal life; it is these that testify about Me… For if you believed Moses, you would believe Me, for he wrote about Me. But if you do not believe his writings, how will you believe My words?” John 5:46-47
The key to understanding God’s ways that enables us to gain insights and capitalize on future trends is to love God’s Word and meditate on every word He said. Many did not want to read every word because they find it tedious and irrelevant in solving immediate problems; they prefer to listen to online sermons that were heavily skewed towards God’s willingness to bless. Such sermons have mass appeal and are easy to listen to. But the only way to hear God speaking to you in a consistent way is to read every of His Word beginning with the Gospel of John, Paul’s epistles, the Proverbs and the first five books of the Bible etc. God will speak and entrusts His wisdom to you if you would invest time to hear His voice through the Word. God gave Daniel and his friends wisdom and knowledge in all areas of science and philosophy because they read the Word and decided not to defile themselves by eating food offered to idols (Daniel 1:8,17). God gave Joseph dreams and their interpretations concerning the future of Egypt because He was well versed with the Word.
I want to encourage you to spend at least 15 minutes daily reading the Word and you will definitely see positive changes to your family and work life.
Proverbs 16:20 says, “He who gives attention to the Word will find good. And blessed is he who trusts in the Lord.”