How I hear from God…

The words I write often come to me when I least expect them. It’s not unusual for me to get an idea from God while working on projects. It happened when I was building a potting bench out of reclaimed wood. I think He uses times like this when I’m focusing on the mundane stuff to direct my thoughts back to Him.

How do you HEAR from God?

Now, the #1 way we should be hearing from God is through His Word. Our Bible is alive and within it’s pages we find everything we need for navigating life as a believer of Christ.

If you feel like God is a long ways off or is not responding to your need to hear from Him, get in the Word!

That said, there are certainly other ways we hear from God. While we are doing what we do – handling job responsibilities, raising kids, planning the next meal, coaching t-ball or soccer, caring for family, working out, mowing the lawn – God will often speak.

We also hear from Him when we pray, worship, listen to a message preached or have an encouraging conversation with a friend.

But how do we KNOW it’s Him?

For most of us, there is a learning curve to this. Because my parents believed God for every aspect of their lives and expected to hear from Him, I also learned to believe and expect.

But how do we KNOW it's Him? #hear #believe Click To Tweet

If this is new to you, or if you’re going through an especially rough time, it’s understandable you might ask the ‘how can I KNOW’? question. (There is nothing wrong with asking questions.)

To KNOW when He’s speaking, we must…

  1. Believe – We’ve got to believe He cares enough about our daily lives to speak to us. This is faith.
  2. Expect – We must expect to hear from Him. This requires building up our faith by getting to know God’s character. It may mean different steps for each of us, like attending church on a more regular basis or digging deeper into devotion and Bible study.
  3. Listen – We have to listen if we want to hear Him speak. This is a major part of the learning curve. To listen we need to pause, be still, stop talking, pay attention – or maybe all the above.

{And don’t miss #’s 4 and 5 below!}

Be still, and know that I am God. Psalm 46.10a

Now, I’m not saying I grew up the daughter who was always a good listener? It simply was not the case. But it’s been a few years, now. I’ve learned a few things – the hard way.

Today, I hear from God in the common and expected, but I also hear Him in some of the most unlikely places.

Several years ago, sitting in my car outside the grocery store, I wrote lyrics that later became the theme song for a conference where our team was to lead worship. I grabbed the only scrap of paper I could find and started writing. God was speaking. I was learning to hear.

I sometimes hear from God when I’m driving in the car. (What is it with me and cars?) It usually goes something like this, “Calm down, Karlene. Yep, that driver cut you off quite rudely, but just calm down!”  Yes, God does speak to me like that on occasion. I’m not a girl anymore, but I’m still learning.

To hear from God we must make room #hear #believe Click To Tweet

Believe, Expect, Listen…and there’s a #4.

To hear from God, we must also make roomWhen we make room – in our day, in our routine, in our household, in our ministry, in our work – He speaks. It may not always be exactly what you want to hear, but let Him speak, none-the-less.

How do you hear from God? We can hear from Him in the middle of the rest of our life. Believe, expect, listen and make room to hear from Him.Believe, Expect, Listen, Make Room…and there’s a #5.

To hear from God, we should test it. When we feel we’ve heard from God, whether by way of prayer, reading, worship, a sermon, or the encouraging word of a friend (or if, like me, while working on a project or driving the car) we need to test it.

We can test what we think we’ve heard by asking the Lord to confirm it by His Word, in prayer, or by seeking the council of a trusted pastor, spiritual mentor or friend.

How do I hear from God?

By believing, expecting, listening, making room and testing it. And you can, too.

And when He speaks, you can be sure it’s something you need to hear.

P.S. That really IS the actual potting bench I made in the picture up there! My hubs helped just a little by sawing a few pieces of wood, but otherwise it was all me. And I did hear from God in the process. It was a win-win.

image mine