Hearing God’s Voice for Others (Part 3)

  • “I’ve got nothing.”
  • “I can’t Hear God.”
  • “I’ve never heard God before.”
  • “What if it’s not God but my own thoughts?”

These are all comments I regularly hear when adults are beginning to prophesy. With children, I don’t hear the same. Children tend to just take it for granted that they will hear or see or sense something and that what ever that is, then it must be from God. Us adults can tend to highlight our own thoughts way too high and believe that what we are hearing or sensing is from ourselves, that no way would it be from God.

First Thought Principle:

I encourage people to grab the first thought that comes through your head when you are trying to hear or sense from God. This works well if you are in a great place emotionally and spiritually, but not so well if you are in the pits of despair or a spiritual barren place.

I find that the ‘first thought’ through my mind is from God. It comes so quick. Then a second thought follows soon after – “What if it is me and not God?” Grab that first thought and hold on to it and expand it with God. Don’t partner with the second thought of “What if it is from me?” Ask God questions to find out more information because He loves answering them.

Once you have started hearing God for yourself, you learn to recognise what God sounds like. Some people will see pictures or sense what God is saying. Once we can hear God or sense Him, it is easy to begin to hear God and what is on His heart for others. We can help others realise how God sees them.

When starting to hear God for others, it is always important to remember that you only ever communicate to another person the positive. 1 Corinthians 14:3 says “But the one who prophesies speaks to people for the strengthening, encouraging or comfort.” Thus, we only share that which will be encouraging, comforting and strengthening.

What if I am wrong?

I can remember when I was fairly new at hearing from God. I was matched up with another person and we were giving prophetic words to leaders in a prophetic presbytery at our church conference. This lady came in and sat down. I immediately received the words ‘Romanian orphanage’. I was aghast. I must have heard wrong. Fancy saying that to someone. What if I was terribly wrong? I couldn’t say that!

Take note that during these thoughts I had, I was giving myself and my thoughts far too much credit and not focusing on the magnificence of God. It became all about me and not about God.

I managed to say something to the lady but did not utter anything about Romania and orphanage. The lady politely sat there impassively, recording the conversation. At the end of five minutes, after repeated promptings of ‘Romanian orphanage’ in my mind, I finally blurted out, “I just keep getting a sense that you will have something to do with an Eastern European orphanage”. (I tried to be more general and not mention the exact word ‘Romania’ to be safer.) The lady immediately burst into tears and then preceded to share with us that only the evening before, her husband and her had agreed to lay the years of infertility treatment behind them and felt that God was calling them to adopt a baby/child from Romania. They had pleaded with God to confirm it within the next few days.

I am so glad that I finally got ‘over myself’ and the thoughts of it being from me or thoughts of ‘what if I was wrong’. It was so exciting to partner with God and see this lady receive an answered prayer. I decided then and there that I would always communicate exactly what I felt God was wanting to say through me.

This blog post is third in a series of 4 blogs. Last week, I blogged about Hearing God’s voice for yourself (Part 2). The first week of the series was Hearing from God (part 1)

For now, we are going to practice hearing or sensing from God for something for someone else. Encourage everyone that this is a safe place to learn to hear God for someone else. As long as it is encouraging, then that is great.

If you have more than one person with you, these two following exercises work well. If you are on your own, ask God to highlight to you a person whom you could use to follow these exercises.

First Activation: (For this activation you will need a number of matchbox vehicles)

  1. Put a number of different match box cars, trucks, planes, trains on the table.
  2. Partner up.
  3. Ask God to highlight one particular vehicle to you that represents your partner.
    1. Ask God why that particular vehicle.
    2. Ask Him what does that vehicle have about it that is similar to their partner.
  4. Pick up the vehicle.
  5. Explain to your partner what you felt God say or tell or show you.
  6. Ask if anyone wants to share in the bigger group or in front of every family member present what they felt, saw or heard from God for their partner.

Second Activation: (For this activation, you will need a number of pictures or patterned paper)

  1. Put a number of pictures or patterned paper on the floor.
  2. Partner up with someone different to your first partner.
  3. Get everyone to walk around and look at the pictures.
  4. Ask God to highlight to everyone a picture that says something of God’s heart for their partner. (Even just pick up a picture that gets your attention.)
  5. Pick up the picture.
  6. Give it to your partner, explaining what God showed, told or impressed on you about your partner and the picture.

I would love to hear how you are finding hearing from God. Please feel free to comment below. Next week I will blog in part 4 about how to grow in your ability to hear, sense and see from God.

Prophetic Activations / Exercises to incorporate into your week:

The purpose of these exercises is to help us hear God’s voice in a clearer manner. They sharpen our senses to hear and recognise God’s voice and His way of communicating with us. This enables us to grow in our relationship with God and also to impart to others what God tells us for them. Feel free to use as many of these activations each week as you can. The more you practice, the sharper you become at hearing God’s voice. Enjoy! Remember that whenever you give another person a prophetic word or picture etc, please make sure that it is encouraging, edifying (strengthening) and comforting (1 Corinthians 14:3) and that it comes from a place of love.

1. Children / Families Activation: Sit in a circle and ask God to show, tell or give you a movie/tv character for the person on your right. Ask God why this particular tv or movie character and what is similar about the character and the person on your right. Share with the person on your right.

2. Group Activation: Play ‘prophetic tag’. Choose a person to be ‘the tagger’. They stand in the middle of the room and everyone goes to the other end. These people have to try to get to the other side of the room without being tagged by the person in the centre (the tagger). If someone is tagged, that person has to give ‘the tagger’ (the person who tagged them) a prophetic word. They then become ‘the tagger’ and the previous ‘tagger’ joins the rest of the group trying to cross the room without being tagged. If you have a large group, consider having several people in the middle being ‘taggers’.

3. Beginner Activation: Ask God to highlight a Psalm from the Bible to you. Read it through and meditate on it. Ask God to highlight whom you could share this Psalm with today and how it might minister to them.

4. Intermediate Activation: Select a very old person at church and spend time with God receiving what He has to say about this person. Communicate this to them in an appropriate manner.

5. Advanced Activation: Spend time with God asking Him for a prophetic word for the Seniors group in your church. If your church doesn’t have a Senior’s group, ask God which other Senior’s group it would be relevant for and deliver it to them appropriately.

Hearing God

iStock_000000519933XSmallTwenty years ago, hubby and I were in Israel on a work party painting a hospital in Nazareth. Whilst there, we also toured around and since it was part of a subject for our theological degrees, we had lots of biblical input from various people. Unfortunately I don’t remember it all but the thing I most remember is walking down the hill from the place where Jesus may have given his sermon on the mount to the Sea of Galilee. As our group chatted away, we passed an old arab shepherd and his small flock of about ten sheep. Due to our noise, we fightened the sheep and they ran off in all directions. The shepherd quietly uttered a couple of arabic words and the entire flock of sheep immediately stopped and ran back to him. I was flabberghasted. I had been brought up on a dairy farm in Tasmania and we had some sheep from time to time (mainly for the freezer). Sheep in Tasmania never obeyed your voice. These sheep did. As I pondered this, I realised the main difference was the shepherd was sitting with these sheep all day. They knew they were safe with him. They knew his voice. It made the passage in John 10 come alive for me that day “My sheep listen to my voice. I know them and they follow me.” (John 10:27)

Basically, to hear God’s voice, it requires us to be intimate with Him. To spend time with Him. To recognise His methods of communicating with us, His love languages, His voice, His nuances, His tone. I don’t know about you, but I want to hear clearly from God, to be able to instantly recognise Him.

There are basically 3 different voices we can listen to:

  • God’s voice which is encouraging, safe, peaceful, comforting, bringing life and sounding like the fruit of the Spirit (Galations 5:22-23) – love, joy, peace, patient, kind, gentle,etc.
  • Our own self – reasons with human logic & what is already known, justifies, can be self seeking, tries to be logical and doesn’t usually contain any new information, speaks what is best for us & our expectations, can go around in circles,
  • Satan which is full of accusations, half truths, discouraging, condemning, killing hope, and sounding like His fruit (Galations 5:20-21) – angry, intimidating, jealous, bringing shame and fear,

There are some different ways we can hear God:

  • Auditory – loud voice, still small voice, songs, sounds
  • Visual – pictures, colours, symbols, vision, dreams, angels
  • Emotions/physical sensations
  • Other senses eg smell, taste,
  • Through reading the Bible
  • Impressions / ‘gut’ feeling
  • Other – nature, music, numbers, and more

How to hear God clearer: positioning ourself to hear more from God

  • Be intentional – desire to be more intimate with Father God, Holy Spirit, Jesus
  • Confess known sin
  • Worship Him
  • Quieten yourself down and get rid of distractions
  • Soak – play some quiet worship music that allows you to sit / lie in God’s presence and meditate on Him.
  • Be open-minded – God doesn’t always work the same way. He loves trying new things and methods. God is creative. He wants to romance you with the unexpected.

Prophetic Activations / Exercises to incorporate into your week:

The purpose of these exercises is to help us hear God’s voice in a clearer manner. They sharpen our senses to hear and recognise God’s voice and way of communicating with us. This enables us to grow in our relationship with God and also to impart to others what God tells us for them.

Remember that whenever you give another person a prophetic word or picture etc, please make sure that it is encouraging, edifying (strengthening) and comforting (1 Corinthians 14:3)

1. Children / families: Everyone choose a person to give a prophetic picture to eg in a family, the person sitting on their left. If a big group of children, pairs might be easier and quicker. Ask God to show everyone how God wants to dress/clothe their partner. Ask God why those particular clothes/outfit. Then share with each other. If you are doing this as a family, you may all enjoy asking God for a picture of how He sees them dressed for everyone in the family.

2. Group activation: Everyone grab a paper and pen and sit in a circle. Everyone will write a prophetic word without knowing who they will give it to. Ask God how He sees that person, what His heart is for that person, how He feels for that person. Write it down. After 5 minutes, have everyone pass their paper to the 3rd person on their left. Everyone then reads what is on the paper in their hand.

3. Beginner Activation: Grab a journal and a pen and spend some time just with God. Ask God “What do you think/feel when you look at me?” Write down everything that comes to you, every thought, feeling, picture, impression. Everything no matter how seemingly small or insignificant. Later, spend some time reading over the list and taking in everything positive and encouraging that you wrote down.

4. Intermediate Activation: Ask God to show you who to give a prophetic word to. Then spend some time asking God to show you a Bible character for that person. Continue asking God questions to ‘flesh’ it out more eg why that character, what specifically about that character, what character qualities is that person known for, what impact did that character have on their world and what impact are you seeing this person have on their world, etc. Then give that prophetic word to that person.

5. Advanced Activation: Ask God to show you a specific person you could sing a prophetic song over. If you are unsure, practice at home whilst you have a specific person in mind. Ask God to give you a new melody / tune and words that speak to that person’s spirit and ask if you can release it over them.