Listening for God’s Voice


by Katy Kauffman


The Power of God’s Voice


A song glided over the mountains and slipped through the window of my hotel room, or so I thought. As I woke up in one of my favorite places on earth, the Blue Ridge Mountains, I strained to hear the melody of some faint sound. Where is that coming from? Can the mountains really sing?


I turned on the light and almost decided the mountain tops possessed some magical quality. And then I discovered it. The new alarm app on my tablet was quietly urging me to wake up. The volume was turned down so low I didn’t even realize it was speaking to me.


The Power of God’s Volume


There have been times in my life that I wanted God to blare an answer to my question or trumpet the timing of His plan. But I’ve discovered that it’s the quiet moments that take His soft reply and sear His answer on my heart. He doesn’t need to shout. He simply needs to whisper. Do we realize He is speaking to us?

 

God’s choice method of communication to the mighty prophet Elijah was not a show of overwhelming strength. God didn’t appear to him in a great wind, a tumultuous earthquake, or a raging fire. “A still small voice” (1 Kings 19:12 NKJV*) glided over the mountain to Elijah’s hiding place in the cave. God reassured him that seven thousand people were still faithful to the one true God in a land ruled by an idolatrous king and queen. God also gave him his next assignment—to find Elisha, his future apprentice. Elijah wouldn’t have to continue his ministry alone. God’s comforting words enabled him to keep moving forward with His plan, enabling Elijah to overcome fear with the promises of God and faith in the One who gave them.

 

The Power of God’s Word


Your ears shall hear a word
behind you, saying,
“This is the way, walk in it,”
whenever you turn
to the right hand or
whenever you turn to the left.
Isaiah 30:21 NKJV


You shall hear a word … just a word. A simple word from God can make all the difference in the trajectory of our lives and the strength of our hearts. What word do you need to hear from Him today?

  • I have loved you with an everlasting love (Jeremiah 31:3).
  • You are mine (Isaiah 43:1).
  • I am with you always (Matthew 28:20).  
  • Go and sin no more (John 8:11).
  • With God all things are possible (Mark 10:27).


God knows when we need comfort and strength, and He also knows when we need a specific word of direction. He gives it to us at just the right time. If we’re listening. A close relationship with God in which we constantly depend on Him and ask Him for guidance, turns anxiety into peace and ignorance into wisdom. When we lack wisdom, we can ask God for help and He will give it (James 1:5) in just the right way at just the right time.


Anxiety churned within me. More than once. I didn’t know what to do, and I didn’t want to do the wrong thing. I wanted to use my brain and make an informed decision, but more than anything, I wanted God path’s, not my own. So I asked Him—about a relationship, about a job opportunity, for comfort, to intervene. He answered.


Sometimes I questioned whether the answer came from my heart or God’s. But asking a certain question usually helps me to know whether the source of the answer is God or not. “Father, if You were to bind all other voices and I were to hear only from You and do Your will, what is Your will about …?” This question usually yields an answer before I even finish saying it. Hearing from God brings peace to our hearts, direction for our lives, and His best path for our today and tomorrow. Are our hearts and minds willing to receive His answer?


The Power of an Open Heart and Mind


God is speaking—are we willing to listen? Pride says, “I can handle it.” Humility says, “I will seek God’s guidance.” Anxiety says, “I don’t know how this is going to turn out and I need to know.” Peace says, “I will seek God’s will about this and rest in His answer.” Are we willing to set aside our own wisdom and fears to listen for God’s guidance?


Building a history with God makes us more and more willing to listen for His voice. We know He speaks the truth and gives perfect direction. He can see what we can’t, and He knows how a situation will turn out. He loves us without flaw or hindrance, perfectly, and can do anything He wants. When we have seen Him act on our behalf, it helps us to trust Him for next time. So trust. Ask Him for what you need. Expect an answer. God loves His children and wants to lead us, comfort us, and strengthen us.


How have you seen God turn anxiety into peace and desperation into wisdom? Hold on to those moments when the voice of God intervened in your life, and keep seeking Him. His voice will be our constant guide until we arrive in heaven, and with His help and direction we will accomplish His will for us on this earth.


Prayer:


Dear Father, Quiet my heart that I may hear the “word” You want to speak to me. Remove any anxiety and pride so I can hear You clearly. Thank You in advance for guiding me, and thank You that Your love is so great that You take the time to speak to each of Your children. Help us to take enough time to listen. In Jesus’ name, Amen.


Questions:

1. Is there a particular way that you ask God for direction, and you can be sure it’s His voice and not your own?

2. What evidence has God given you, that taking time to listen to His voice is worth the time spent?

3. What can hinder us from hearing God clearly?

4. How can we deal with those hindrances?

5. Of the five verses listed under the heading, “The Power of God’s Word,” which “word” from God do you need the most today?

6. Think of a friend or family member who needs to hear from God. Pray for them a verse of Scripture that would help them right now.


*All Scripture verses are taken from the NKJV.

Copyright © 2019 by Katy Kauffman, The Power to Make a Difference: Strategies, Insights, and Encouragement in Forty Short Bible Studies (Buford, Georgia: Lighthouse Bible Studies, 2019), 161-164. 

 

This short Bible study comes from our compilation called The Power to Make a Difference: Strategies, Insights, and Encouragement in Forty Short Bible StudiesMy article is in “The Power of Words” section.


What difference are you making in the world? Our words matter, and so does hearing from God and acting on it. This compilation talks about making a difference and how our words, knowledge, actions, and prayers matter. This study can be used for a personal quiet time or in a small group. A leader guide for an eight-week group study is included in the book. 


The Power to Make a Difference is available through our website and Amazon.

 

prayer, God's guidance, small group Bible studies, The Power to Make a Difference, Katy Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies

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Winning the Victory: A Blog by Katy Kauffman

Award-Winning Author, Editor, Bible Teacher

As co-founder of Lighthouse Bible Studies, Katy is a Bible study author and editor of Refresh Bible Study Magazine. Follow Katy's blog to receive bi-monthly posts sharing practical strategies for winning life's spiritual battles. 

 

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