hearing the voice of god

5 Ways to Hearing the Voice of God to Avoid Costly Mistakes

Peter Guirguis Encouragement 39 Comments

Have you ever been in a situation in which you thought that God was speaking to you, but you had doubts if you really were hearing the voice of God?

A couple of months ago, I found out that I was going to run out of money in my savings account due to some unexpected bills.

Andrew Guirguis

My son, Andrew, at two months old

My wife was pregnant with our son Andrew this year. As a result, we had a total of five hospital bills that our health insurance didn’t cover.

The cost was enormous, thousands of dollars but, of course, totally worth it 🙂

As I was praying to God, asking Him about what I should do, someone from the Internet approached me with a business proposition.

He wanted me to promote his product on my blog and for every reader that signs up, I would get a commission.

Quite frankly, I get pitches like this all the time, but this one seemed like it was a win/win situation.

I would make some extra money to pay for the extra hospital bills, and my readers would sign up for an excellent product that would help them with social media.

I asked God if I should go into a business venture with this guy, and I heard what appeared to be a small and still voice that told me, “Go for it!”

Was I hearing the voice of God?  Did God really want me to go into business with this gentleman?  How can I be sure that I was hearing from God?

I share with you at the end of this blog post if that voice that I heard really was God, or if it was something else.

Are You Sure You’re Hearing the Voice of God?

Last week I published my testimony online, and many of you shared it on social media and sent me personal email messages.

I’m so thankful to each one of you who wrote to me, tweeted at me, and who shared my story.

Surprisingly though, some of the people who wrote to me asked about how they can be sure that they are hearing the voice of God.

The reason some people were asking specifically about this was because hearing the voice of God was an important part of my testimony.

As it turns out, there’s a lot of confusion about what it’s like to be a Christian whose hearing the voice of God.

The problem is that we aren’t always sure if we’re correctly hearing God’s voice.  Additionally, sometimes what we think is God’s voice is our voice, or even worse, it’s the voice of the enemy.

You would think that it would be easy to identify the voice of the enemy but remember, the apostle Paul wrote about Satan:

For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light.

-2 Corinthians 11:14

So how can you make sure that you’re hearing the voice of God?

How can you be sure that you aren’t mistaking God’s voice for your voice, or for the voice of the enemy?

Read on to find out.

The Three Different Voices That You Can Hear

There are three different voices that you can hear in your heart or your mind.

That means that you can’t hear them with your ears, but they are internal voices that can be likened to a private conversation between two people.

1.  Your Own Voice

Man hearing his own voice instead of hearing the voice of GodDid you know that you have your own internal voice?

You can ask yourself questions like, “Should I go to this restaurant?  Should I buy this item? Should I go to this place?”

Many times, you’ll get an answer back from your internal voice.

It registers as a thought, but it has a precise guiding tone, or it will give you specific advice to follow.

This is the number one voice that get’s mistaken for God’s voice, because it does appear to be a still (a quiet whisper) and small (very fine) voice.

You’ll learn how to distinguish between your voice and God’s voice later in this blog post.

2.  The Enemy’s Voice

Make no mistake, the enemy is here to seek, kill, and destroy you.  He hates that you’re a child of God and that you’re looking to do His will but:

[Tweet “He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world! #ThankYouJesus”]

One way that you can recognize the voice of the enemy is to see if it’s causing you confusion.

 For God is not the author of confusion but of peace, as in all the churches of the saints.

-1 Corinthians 14:33

[Tweet “The enemy’s voice will give you confusion, but God’s voice will give you peace.”]

3.  God’s Voice

When we read about the voice of God that came to Elijah in 1 Kings 19, we learn that the voice of God is a small and still voice.

God uses the small still voice of the Holy Spirit to speak only to His real children, and not to any fake ones.

Jesus said,

My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me.

– Jesus, John 10:27

hearing the voice of God enables you to make the right choice

 

READ  The Secret to Having a Good Day Even When It's a Bad Day [video]

Five Different Ways That God Speaks to You

Below are five ways through which God speaks to you. They’re listed in order of the least often used method to the most often used one.

5.   Method #5 – Dreams and Visions

“And it shall come to pass afterward

That I will pour out My Spirit on all flesh;

Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy,

Your old men shall dream dreams,

Your young men shall see visions.”

– Joel 2:28

God can speak to you through a dream while you’re sleeping or a vision while you’re awake.

It seems that God is using this method in the Muslim world, because many Muslims are coming to Christ through dreams and visions.

Warning: How can you know if your dream or vision is from God?

The Holy Spirit that lives inside of you will bear witness that the dream or vision that you’re having is from God.

He will give you confirmation in your spirit so that you’ll know that you’re hearing the voice of God through a dream or a vision.

4.  Method #4 – Other People

God can speak to you through other people.  God can send someone to deliver a particular message to you.

From my experience, I’ve found that God sometimes will use this method when you’re not correctly discerning His voice or His will.

He’s tried to correct you by speaking to you but you’re not listening, or you’re not understanding God’s message.

So because God is a loving Father, He ends up sending someone to give you a direct message.

Of course, there are other times when God may choose this method as well; it’s not just limited to when you need correction.

Warning:  How can you know that the person that is giving you a message is sent by God?

You can look at a person’s walk with God to see if he/she is sent from God.  You can be sure that God isn’t going to use just anyone to be His messenger.

He’ll use faithful servants that love God, which are doing His will, and that are courageous.

Also, many times God will use a pastor’s sermon to speak to you directly about a particular situation, or to answer a question that you’ve been asking Him through prayer.

Additionally, look at the message that’s being given to you.  Does it line up with Scripture?  Is this something that your loving Heavenly Father would want to say to you?

3.  Method #3 – Open Doors and Closed Doors

when God shuts a door make sure you are hearing the voice of godJesus said to the faithful church of Philadelphia in the book of Revelation:

These things says He who is holy, He who is true, He who has the key of David,

He who opens and no one shuts, and shuts and no one opens:

“I know your works. See, I have set before you an open door, and no one can shut it…

– Revelation 3:7-8

God will sometimes open a door for you because He wants you to walk through it, and other times, He will close a door that He doesn’t want you to go through at all.

Example:  You went on five job interviews and you got two job offers.  You pray about which one you should take.

All of a sudden, the interviewer from one of your job offers calls you and tells you that they’ve decided to update the position to have traveling be a big part of the job.

You know that you can’t travel because you need to have a job where you can stay with your family.  God is closing one door so that you can know which job offer to choose.

Warning:  How can you know if an open door is from God?

The open door will usually require you to step out in faith and to trust God.  You’ll be taking one step closer to God and to the cross, as opposed to taking a step back.

2.  Method #2 – God’s Small Still Voice

God can many times speak to you through the small still voice of the Holy Spirit.

“However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth;

for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak;

and He will tell you things to come.”

– Jesus, John 16:13-14

When you get saved, God may speak to you a lot through a small still voice.  He will tell you to pray or to do something specific.

However, as you walk longer with the Lord, God may use this method less as you grow in your relationship with Him.

Additionally, God’s small still voice can be confused with your own inner voice, or with the voice of the enemy who is trying to trip you up.

Warning:  How can you know that the voice that you’re hearing is God’s small still voice?

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God’s small still voice has certain characteristics.

From James 3:17, we learn that, “The wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality and without hypocrisy.”

Is the voice that you’re hearing pure, peaceable, gentle, full of mercy, and good fruits?

Does the voice that you’re hearing have the qualities of the fruit of the Spirit, as found in Galatians 5? (Full of love, joy, peace…)

All of these are qualities that the voice of God will have.

1.  Method #1 – God’s Word (The Bible)

If you want to hear God speak to you right now, just open up your Bible and start reading it out loud.  That will be God speaking to you.

you can know you are hearing the voice of God by opening the word of God

God’s Word is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword (Hebrews 4:12).

John 1 tells us that Jesus is the Word of God.

The problem is that some Christians are used to playing Bible roulette.

roulette tableThey don’t read the Bible everyday and so when they’re faced with a difficult decision that they need an answer to, they’ll hold their bibles, close their eyes, and then open up to a page of Scripture.

They’ll hope to find the answer to their question by reading the page they opened up to.

But this is a big mistake and this isn’t the way God speaks to you through His Word.

The way that God speaks to you through the Bible is by reading it everyday.

You have two options, either you can read from one chapter to the next, or you can pray about a good reading plan.

Then everyday when you pray, you bring your petitions before the Lord.  Then as you’re doing that daily Bible reading afterward, the Holy Spirit will cause a certain Bible verse or a bunch of them to stand out from the rest.

Those Bible verses will have the answer to your question and will guide you in the way that you should go.

Your word is a lamp to my feet And a light to my path.

– Psalm 119:105

The important thing is to read your Bible daily and systematically.  Then you can leave the rest up to God.

[Tweet “You can know you’re hearing the voice of God by opening the Word of God!”]

Remember the Story About My Finances?

If you’ve made it this far in the blog post, then you remember how I opened up with the story about not having enough finances for the rest of the year.

Was I hearing the voice of God when I heard an internal voice say to me that I should go into business with the guy who was making the business proposition?

At first, I thought that it really was God’s voice and so I began to make preparations.  

I began to type up emails, and to test the product that I was going to promote.

At a later time however, God spoke to me through one of my pastor’s sermons, and He showed me that I was making the wrong decision.

God used method #4 from above, other people, to show me that I wasn’t hearing the voice of God.  It was my own internal voice and I thought it was God’s voice.

I wanted this new business venture to be God’s will so badly, that I fell for the trap of thinking that it was God who was speaking to me when it was my own inner voice all along.

But God showed me that I need to trust Him, and that His plans are much better than my own plans.

What Would Your Life Look Like if You Heard From God Regularly?

Imagine what your life would look like if you were able to better discern God’s voice.

The next time that you’re stressed out because you’re running out of money, you’ll trust God that He’s going to supply all of your needs.

Imagine the next time that you have a problem at work, instead of worrying because you’re not sure about your future, you instead worship and lift your hands in praise.

Imagine the next time that you are facing a major decision, you’re no longer fretting about which choice to make because you’ve already heard from God, and He’s shown you what choice to make.

The single most important thing to take away from this blog post is read your Bible everyday.

Your life will be blessed, and you’ll be glad that you’re a Christian who’s hearing the voice of God.

 

[featured image via Julio Pineda]

 

Comments 39

  1. I know from experience my own life is so much better when I’m hearing from God regularly. Great wisdom Peter. Thanks for writing this.

    1. You’re welcome Kurt, thanks for sharing your insight 🙂 I can definitely see the hand of God upon your life and see how He has blessed you tremendously.

      God is so cool 🙂

  2. Peter, gr8 post on hearing from God. I hope you don’t mind, but I ‘borrowed’ your graphic on Open/Closed doors and posted it on my personal Facebook page.

    1. No problem Don, please feel free to use any of the graphics on my blog 🙂

      I think I also got an email from you. I’ll be checking it out and replying back to you soon.

      God bless you 🙂

  3. I loved this article! The only trouble that I had is that sometimes, even really good Christians can give you advice that against what God is telling you to do. I have a son with autism. I felt I was being led to homeschool him. Most of the advice I was getting, from good Christian people, was not to do that. I understand perfectly why they were saying that. My son is difficult at best.

    However, I was in the Word, and I really felt I was being led. On top of that, God was closing the door that was public school. Slowly but surely it was becoming an impossible situation.

    I guess my point here is that even good, Godly Christians can be wrong. You’re absolutely right. STAY IN THE WORD!!

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  6. God is great indeed…I’m so happy to read this article..it makes me proud and grateful to have God who is merciful and communicate with us through His servants…God bless you..your article touched me alot..i feel growth in my Christian life…I’m immature in terms of Christianity but I’m so eager to be matured and be able to be stable in my journey…and to have self control…please help me, how can I be able to do these things

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      I think the best place to start Nothile is with prayer and reading your Bible every day. Even if it’s just for a few minutes, making this a daily habit will be the best thing you can do in your spiritual life.

  7. I can say I have heard the Word of God thru the Holy Spirit in a dream. It was the Calmest, sweetest male voice I have ever heard.
    The dream was of me seeing my boyfriend (at the time) with another woman. That voice said “If that were to happen, could you forgive him?” I said yes in my dream. It turned out to be true and I was set to forgive, at least until my now ex chose to continue to lie, and became quite rude. I think he wanted to make me mad to leave him.
    But that voice I will never forget!
    Thanks for this Blog!

  8. How do you know that the voices you hear in your “heart” (ie., head/brain) are invisible spirits; God or Satan? Isn’t it entirely possible that both the “good” and the “bad” voices you hear are simply YOU talking to yourself? Human beings have internal conversations with themselves all day long:

    “Wow. I am such an idiot. That was really a dumb thing to do.”

    or

    “Wow. I sure did a good job today. My productivity is the best in the office. I sure hope the boss notices.”

  9. I’ve been saved since I was a young girl. I’ve had so many conversations with the Lord. I’d have to say today being 39yrs old my heart was broke thinking what I thought was Him talking to me possibly wasnt. In a short version I’m trying so hard to pass a test so that I can better my career. I’ve studied for 4mths on it and with unbelievable peace I took the test Friday. All I could hear was “Don’t worry I’m right here with you, you’re going to do great”. I knew the Lord was there giving me strength and peace, not to mention all the knowledge I’d been studying for.
    Well today before opening up to see my test scores I prayed letting the Lord know how thankful I was for his love & help. I heard that sweet comforting voice again “Don’t worry I’m right here, you did great!”
    I opened it up and didn’t pass. Right then my heart sank and I cried asking why. I’m disappointed, but it makes me more igor to hear Him and redo my test again. I want a closer relationship with God I just get sick of my brain not being quiet!
    Anyways, thanks for you r

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    2. Hi sister,
      This is from a lack of Faith. We can’t always put God to the test. We can’t walk across a freeway blindfolded and expect Him to save us. It is the same story that was left for us to follow as an example: “The Israelites in the Wilderness.” Do you remember when Moses had left them for 40 years? What did they do? They made a false god in a form of a calf, some committed immorality, and others tested Christ with the snakes. (1 Corinthians 10:9) It has been several months since, I hope you have kept up with the Faith sister. God is real, no need to test Him to see. Many want to see a sign or a miracle. Just believe, your on the right path I had done the same-thing. 4 days I went out to catch fish and I said, “I believe with my whole heart that I will catch some fish, I prayed, asked and I genuinely believed.” But God knew the Truth. I didn’t have the mustard seed faith to move a mountain. Eventually I caught no fish, I got angry / sad, lost tremendous Faith and I sinned in anger….But something weighed on me. I still believed God, He was all I had and I’m very certain He is all you have…Now my situation is 100x more worse physically, but spiritually I am in awe. This is what it means by carrying the cross, long-suffering, ye will have many tribulations to the Kingdom, so forth. Jesus and apostles didn’t enjoy their life, they came to do God’s Will…I could go on forever sister, bottom line. God is real, He will come to You, always in the perfect timing, it can be now, tommorow, a month, a year, or like the Israelites 40 years in the Wilderness. Be Holy as He is without Holiness no one will see the Lord. Blessed are the pure in Heart for they shall see God. Love thy neighbor, thy enemy. Read His Word. Look what message He worked through me to deliver. Think, why would someone at 12pm could be doing many other things then type this message, because God works through us. He can’t just come down and feed you, and pay your bills, well I still like to think He would for His children, but often He will work through others together unless there is no other way as with Moses in the Red Sea, that is when a miracle will take place. He has done many many for me. If I told you my story you wouldn’t believe it, but I know it would only strengthen you. That’s what I am here for, clearly. Read all of this, I’m here for you because I was and am the very same shoes as you. That is what it means by loving thy neighbor as yourself. Plus I don’t know what I do, I just go. Im there, im over here. Sleep, wake up and do the same. May God’s presence be felt for you, I pray in Jesus name that the Helper will come to You. If you want?…What a feeling. Father thank you for answering another prayer, In Your timing and Will. In Jesus name, Amen! I Love you. Be strong.

  10. Hello Mr. Guirguis thanks for your response. I know we have several voices going on in there. I myself would define “Inner Director” as your conscious talking to you, maybe.
    I find myself not listening to ANY voice right now, but I did pray. I realized I felt more hurt from being mad at the Lord than anything else. We’re to give thanks in everything and I know He has a plan for me. I’m not giving up nor giving the devil satisfaction in thinking he has me.

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      Sounds like you’re making a good decision. But it also sounds like you’re in a difficult place right now. Feel free to message me if you’d like to share what’s going on with you in private.

    2. Please pray for us for direction and certainly of God’s path for us, free of all self- or other deception. After 1 1/2 years of prayer and journaling, seeking God whole-heartedly, I’m at present, uncertain of discerning correctly vs mistaken/misheard. After cutting all distractions to learn His truth and follow His wisdom, I had a very similar heartbreak as Suelin Archer (on a major financial leap of faith less than month prior to possible major life changes based on full belief in promises of God). We are now on the cusp of those promises and I have full faith that what Is the Lord’s plan will come to pass.
      I turned to God’s word alone for several weeks, praise and one-way prayer. We can always do these and give. Yet I do know the true Shepherd’s voice and at times still, His comfort or guidance sounds clear. The true distress is uncertainty of my frail reception of His wisdom. Concerns mount of becoming unwilling to hear, trust and obey God’s call (which is extreme foolishness).
      So we’re asking for extra Prayers for God’s true path for us (not unreliable opinions).
      In an if-all-else-fails reality check, I asked God in prayer with my spouse to stir us up to do His good will, to slam any doors shut that would do harm to us or others! and open exactly those doors to His true and best plan (Jer. 29:11) for our lives bless us and opportunities to bless others.
      One door has already been addressed with more to come. I pray all His good will is done on earth working together for those that love Him and I pray the same for Suelin all His children with open and willing hearts to seek and obey the living God in Faith. In Jesus’ name.

  11. God Bless You Brother Peter,

    This is a wonderful yet powerful message, and it helped me dearly. He speaks through many things, as you mentioned the 5 Methods. The beauty is not the He speaks alone, but like you also mentioned, “He confirms it.” Almost as if He was reading Your mind. Is this what it means to have the “Mind of Christ.” Great work! More blogs, hope to read and hear more of God our Father speaking through you. May He give you every Word, thought and deed. In Jesus name, Amen.

    Please leave me your address brother, would like to keep in touch with you over the years.

    E:uppermostworld@yahoo.com

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      You are most welcome and thank you for your words. All glory be to God ? .

      If you would like to get in touch with me, the best way to do so is to use the contact link in the top navigation of the website. God bless you brother ?

  12. This whole area of hearing God`s voice seems very confusing to me and for that reason, I feel the need to share what I`ve observed and to ask for clarification.. For instance, the story of the lady above who said that she believed the Holy Spirit spoke to her in a dream showing her a picture of her boyfriend being unfaithful. She said the Spirit asked her if he did that, could she forgive him? Nothing more. No illuminating direction, leaving the whole situation open ended without clarification as to what conclusion she should draw. By her own description, the boyfriend continued to lie and mistreat her. I would then, on the basis of the open ended, non directive nature of the voice and the fact of the boyfriend`s sinful and treacherous behaviour, question whether that was God. I do not believe God would commend her to a relationship with an unfaithful, untrustworthy and even perhaps emotionally abusive person ( at least at the moment) unless He gave her some clear direction that she should hang in there and pray for him, because He had a plan to save him. I read once of a woman who found out her husband was a closet homosexual who had been engaging in perversion and was caught in a bathhouse raid for engaging in gross indecency with several other men. Most of us would bail out at that point and that would seem scripturally acceptable. Yet she inquired of God and felt God was leading her to stay and pray for his life and that if she did, God would save him out of his bondage and sin. According to the account, God did just that and today that man is a very compassionate pastor.

    Give that we make decisions about reality and what direction to take based on what we think is God speaking, I would think that there has to be some definitive way to know for certain, some acid test by which we may know that it is God speaking. In scripture one thing I noticed is that God is never vague. He finishes His sentences. He gives clarity and direction. He tells the person what HE is going to do. His words and message have substance to them. Many supposed messages from God are so vague that they actually leave you hanging although they may seem authoritative. Given that we may make life altering decisions based on something we think is a genuine leading from God, I would think it is imperative that there is a way to test and know for sure.

    Take Gideon for example. I have heard guys like John MacArthur characterize Gideon as being guilty of unbelief. However I don`t think that is the case. If Gideon acted on what he heard, he would be going up against an occupying enemy army, and if he was NOT hearing from God, Gideon would have gotten everyone killed or badly injured and who knows what retribution the Midianites would have doled out for an attempted uprising. I think he wanted to make sure he wasn`t presuming something of God and that it was, in fact, God who was speaking to him. Personally I don`t blame him for doing the fleece thing. I`d want to be sure it was God too before I commited myself and a bunch of people who were trusting me, to a course of action that could get us all killed if I was delusional and not hearing from God. I think many Christians can testify to having thought they were launching out in faith on a word from God, only to find they had invited disaster upon themselves through being seduced or deceived.

    In my own life, I once had a powerful encounter that I am still not sure was God or not. Part of the message was that I had taken a lot of responsibility that wasn`t mine, and that I saw people through fear, shame and guilt. Now, this was absolutely true. I had a very abusive background and as is typical of those who abuse others, the blame for their cruel and sinful actions had been heaped on me. As a result, I felt utterly worthless and evil, because of this blameshifting abuse. But of what use was this message to me other than to at the moment at least, comfort me and make me feel better? Many Christians would pounce on this and assure me it was God, and some did. I certainly thought so. I felt freer and I felt comforted, loved and valued by God. Sounds good, right?

    But again, how helpful was the message? It was actually very vague and general. It didn`t specify which blame was false and which responsibility was false and it utterly ignored the patterns of behaviour and responses that developed as a result. That created a real difficulty. Since we are all suffering from sin and depravity, even though I suffered major injustice on a regular basis, did that injustice somehow erase my sin and render me innocent? No, that is not possible, however much it might feel that way. In fact, in spite of other`s sins against me, I still had sin myself. Of what use was this vague, non specific message that did nothing to show me where I was laboring under false responsiblty and where I actually needed to deal with sin? Not much.

    Additionally, it gave me a sense of freedom without real boundaries or directions. I guess what I am saying is that I find it difficult to believe that one would hear from God, and it not point to one`s need of salvation, to the cross, to Jesus, or contain specific directions. Take the case of Hagar, who was clearly fleeing an abusive situation where her basic human rights were curtailed because she was a slave. The angel of the Lord met her and spoke to her. He directed her to return to her mistress and submit to her. Hagar had gotten herself into hot water via an insubordinate attitude, raising herself up in pride against her mistress. The second time, where this time Hagar was sent away, she thought she and her son were going to die beneath the scorching desert sun, having run out of water and so she had put her child beneath a small bush and moved away, not being able to bear watching him die slowly of thirst. God again met her and again He was very specific, addressing her situation and telling her what He was going to do about it and then He provided for her. Same in the NT; God was very specific and directive. It wasn`t hard to guess what God thought about something or what He wanted a given person to do. That`s why such vague warm fuzzy words ought to raise alarm bells. I can`t imagine the God of the universe speaking to us in vague, directionless terms that exist merely to give us good feelings about ourselves or a situation, when so much more is at stake and involved than that..

    Indeed, I had many such encounters I took to be God. Most of them seemed to comfort me and assure of God`s presence and love. Not one ever spoke to me of my own sin issues or gave me a new direction as to what to do with my life in order to please God with it. There was never for instance, any confrontation by the “spirit“ speaking, of my extreme disrespect of my mother, and anger that bordered on hatred towards her. There were things she had done that made my reaction seem quite understandable, but still, for a Christian, hating anyone is out of the question for a follower of Christ, right? Never any direction as to the ungodly fellow I was involved with or warning that I should not be with him. This is inconsistent with scripture as it describes God`s character and the duties that he charged the prophets with for instance. God never askes US to do what He himself is not willing to do. ie, forigive seventy times seven. In the OT, it is said that if the watchman doesn`t warn of incoming danger, he is held guilty of innocent blood for failing to do his duty. I hardly think that God would fail to warn someone of danger in a relationship or a course of action.

    The poster who said that sometimes God leads contrary to what a group of fellow Christians are saying is also right. I would not just assume that because the majority of people think one thing is great that its of God, especially if you don`t see in those people a heavy duty respect for obedience to God`s word and a common practice of inquiring of God about things that come up and are of concern. I have attended numerous churches where things are being discussed in meetings and everyone relies on their own understanding and human reasoning and blithely follows leaders who themselves are not following scripture in several areas, so that sinful fleshly things are trumping clear teaching in the word of God.

    How can we expect to receive trustworthy guidance from habitual disobedience and dullness of heart and hearing? I have heard of a situation where an elder board was unanimous in a decision save one man. He said that he still didn`t have peace about the decision and that they ought to seek the Lord on the matter. Something happened that proved that the decision they were about to make was not, in fact, the right one. The dissenting man proved to be senstive to the Holy Spirit. And of course there are enough examples in the OT of groups of prophets all claiming God is with someone in a certain decision and He was NOT with them. I saw another church hire a man on fleshly thinking; he was tall, handsome and charismatic and he had a pastoral pedigree in the sense that he was the son of a pastor, who himself was the son of a pastor, etc. That means godliness and biblical leadership right. Hah! hardly. Yet the board was unanimous in hiring him. He took their entire church apart, shut down every ministry, wouldn`t allow anyone to talk to him and then decided at the end that he didn`t really want to be a pastor after all. Perhaps he had felt pressured into becoming a pastor by virtue of family history but his behaviour demonstrated some real areas of concern as far as character went.

    So while at this point in time, I wouldn`t rule out entirely that God sovereignly meets us and can speak personally to us, I think that there needs to be a much clearer understanding of how to tell if it is really HIm speaking. I can`t imagine God would want us to not be able to know FOR SURE if it is Him, the flesh or the devil given that the stakes are high and being wrong can result in shipwreck and destruction not just for us but for others connected to us. And we can grossly misrepresent God in the process.

  13. So, what if someone says they had a vision of me and they broke down what it meant…how do I know if that vision is true or if they are just making something up.

  14. Thanks for this well written article. It’s an answer to some of my insecurity in making a choice. I like the roulette analergy. I’m so guilty of it. Will repent to our Father for that one. You have inspired me by confirmation too. The only way to knowing is through studying, and God has given us the gift of His word to study endlessly.

    Thanks again for the blessing

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  15. Reading your blog has made it easy for me to make a decision that I been struggling with for almost 10 years, I’m born again and from my teen age I been a poet and the preacher of the gospel but never considered myself a preacher. In 1999 after I graduated from college I went straight to look for a job , yes I got it but real funny I couldn’t stay long at any of the posts I had, a year after a year or two I will be applying for a new job. Luckily I will 😊 get it , never struggled thank Jesus for having my back all the while. But one thing that was and is still bothering me in 2014 got a call from one of the christian friend and upon the reception of her call she was reciting one of the poems I used to recite during our youth conferences and without me telling her about how I’m changing jobs she tells me how God wants me to serve Him and how much the gospel needs to be preached to the world. Ok I took it as a normal chat. But as years passes by I lived like a routine to change jobs and for the second time she called and said “I don’t dream you where you are today, I see you preaching thus your calling”. Ooops , a preacher, it doesn’t sit well with me especially in a family where you are expected of high rankings in life. I denied it. The more I denied it the more I instantly lost jobs now it was not a matter of a year it is three to six months contracts. Ok fine i went home to cool my head off and think what is next now. Sad i have to get back to a congregation that was huge but now is with less than 10 members, I got sad and sat home one of the Sunday afternoon, an elderly woman from the church came in to my home asking me ” Would you be happy to see the church in our community closing down, Why don’t you get to back to where God put you”? This time I feel it and the hard way because there are five different people who say the same thing but you know I find it to big for me. Can it be possible that He shuts my jobs to serve Him?????????

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      Daniel, I can’t answer the question whether God is speaking to you through those other five different people or not. But I do have a question for you. Why would God use other people to speak to you when He can speak directly to you through His Word or any of His other ways?

  16. Hi Peter, So thankful for your wisdom and understanding of hearing from God. I’ve been a Christian for many years and still I get it wrong sometimes. There has been one issue in my life that has driven me nuts though. I was married to a non Christian and one day a close girlfriend of mine called us up and wanted my then husband to go with her in a helicopter. I was not happy at all about this and kept complaining to God all the way to the Showgrounds where the helicopter was. My two children were in the car at the time. When the helicopter lifted about two metres of the ground I felt a sensation like a bubble burst inside me and unspeakable joy rose up out of me and I was laughing. I had a revealation that brought peace to me that my then husband was going to go up in the rapture…that he would be saved. Our small country town never had helicopters but the day we left to move interstate…10mins before we got into the car to leave….I was amazed and believed Gid was reassuring me that all was well….fast track a few years and our marriage fell apart..I had many prophesys that God would restore my family…I had dreams and visions. (For years) the ones with time limits never came to pass. I’ve struggled with having faith in my heart that Gid can do this miracle even though my X husband is remarried to a young girl…. my struggle is I want but don’t want this restored. I haven’t been able to get rid if this idea even though it’s now 15 years later….I feel trapped if this is just me why would I even be bothered with all this….why can I NOT BELIEVE and just move on….To know Gods voice….I feel afraid to let go because maybe God won’t restore our family but then again afraid that He will…help lol Grace

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      Hi Grace, thank you so much for sharing your experience with us. Yes, I can understand why this situation that you mentioned can cause you confusion.

      I’m currently working on a video that will show Christians how they can hear God’s voice and how they can find out God’s will. I hope that when it comes out that it will be helpful and maybe it might clarify some things.

  17. I have woken up hearing conversations and specific peoples voices saying things about me. Some good and some not so good things. One voice said Happy mumbling…and I saw a specific face book page. I tool’s that to mean that I should not pay attention to that person’s page or to spenders time on facebook. The other said “its because of the way you treated us”… I couldn’t identify that voice or make sense of it. But I felt concerned when I heard it because I began to examine myself as to whether I had mistreated anyone.

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  18. thank you so much peter and thank to God , i really learn some good news from you post ,,since last year i was in agony ,two to three voices last month talking in my mined then i could not able to differentiate between them , one voice telling me move on with you decision not waste your time , the another one saying to me , u have to love your self , ,but there are one voice bagging me telling me pl my daughter hear me just be patient for at least one yr do not be in hurry for taking decision ,your answer for your prayer will be fulfilled. actually am believer of Christ but am not reading bible Avery day only some day ,,,,but at the end i say to my self let me hear the clam voice is the voice of my heavenly father ,,am just searching for some sources to proved my doubt ,i already decide to follow the voice , then i meet your post ,but it help and it create some clarification in my mine ,

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      I am so glad to hear the good news from your comment, Agnes. If I can be of further help, please feel free to leave another comment or, you can message me privately by using the contact link in the navigation of my blog.

      God bless you Agnes 😊

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