From the moment of birth when our lungs fill with air, we fulfill the innate need to have a voice. Whether we speak, sing, write, tweet, e-mail, or blog, humans find ways to express themselves. Perhaps that is why one of the most popular new television shows on NBC is “The Voice” and why one of the six writing elements is voice.
While it is true that we can learn much from listening to the voices of others, it is God’s voice we should be most interested in hearing. The Bible gives many examples of His audible voice, but one of the most interesting is found in John 12 when Christ was facing his upcoming death. He was speaking to the disciples and prayed, “Father, glorify your name.”
Then the crowd heard a voice thunder from heaven, “I have glorified it and will glorify it again.” Jesus said, “This voice was for your benefit, not mine.” Why? Because Christ was in constant communication with the Father, but His followers needed to hear to have their faith strengthened.
Let’s fast forward to current times- for we still have the need to hear. Some say hearing is twice as important as being heard because we were created with two ears and only one mouth.
We primarily hear God’s voice by reading His Word, the Bible. “Faith comes by hearing, and hearing from the word of God.” Roman 10:17 However, hearing has no real purpose unless we obey. James 1:22 warns us to not merely listen to the Word and so deceive ourselves, but to do what it says!
God’s Holy Spirit can also speak to our minds and hearts, guiding our decisions and actions. In such cases we must discern whether it is His voice, our own thoughts, or ones meant to deceive. One way to be certain is to see if these promptings are inline with the Bible- for His voice will never contradict scripture.
Sometimes society says “hearing voices” is a sign of insanity, or a punchline in a comedy, but as Christians we are to expect to hear God’s inner voice. Christ said, “My sheep know my voice and I know them, and they follow me.” (John 10:27) If you hear His voice- rejoice! If you do not, perhaps you have not taken time to quiet yourself to be able to hear over the distractions and static of life. God often whispers.
It is always our choice to hear His voice. Also be sure to reflect on your actions and attitudes, asking forgiveness if you find sin that may be causing interference. As God walked and talked with Adam and Eve, His desire and design is to be in communication with us!