Sunday, April 20, 2008

Listening to God

I have been focusing on 'listening to God' in the past several weeks. I have been seeking His path for my life and wanting to be in His will for me. More and more I sense that I need to hear Him in the various ways that He chooses to speak to me.

Certainly reading His Word and being in deliberate prayer daily is foundational. I say 'deliberate prayer' as that is time carved out of my day just for that purpose. I try to be in constant prayer with God throughout the day but when I'm driving down the road, I know that God does not have my entire focus.

I also picked up a book last week and have been cruising through it. Hearing God by James W. Goll is an interesting book on honing your skills to hear God more consistently. Some tools that he recommends from chapter six:
  1. Don't make it complicated. Submit to His lordship, resist the enemy, ask questions and expect God to answer!
  2. Allow God to speak however He chooses. This is an area that I'm really focusing on. Sometimes it is that inner voice but it can be through His written Word, through another person, through dreams, etc.
  3. Confess any known sins. Psalm 66:18 states "If I regard wickedness in my heart, the Lord will not hear."
  4. Obey the last thing God said. This is interesting when the last thing God said, I may not particularly want to do! Why would God give me new marching orders when I haven't obeyed the last one that He gave me?
  5. Get your own leading. God wants to talk to us personally. He may use others as noted in number two to reach us but He wants to talk to us individually also. Don't be codependent on others to hear God.
  6. Don't talk about your word too soon. Pride, presumption, missed timing, and confusion will step in when we are not completely within God's will. God tells us something as a trusted friend. We need to ask His permission to 'spread the word'.
  7. Know that God will confirm what He's telling you. This confirmation may be through His word or other means.
  8. Beware of counterfeits. Satan is crafty and is the great deceiver. Don't think that you will be ignored by satan. The closer you get to God, the greater the threat you are to satan.
  9. Practice hearing God's voice. When you think that God is speaking to you, REALLY listen. Get to know His voice.
  10. Cultivate an intimate relationship. God wants us to draw close to Him. Really work on this in your daily devotion time.

I look forward to working on these ten steps from Goll's book and recommend the book to others.

Well, gotta go now... God is on the phone! :)