Summary: 2 Kings 7:1, “Then Elisha said, “Hear the word of the Lord…” What steps can I take when I really need to hear from God?
Steps to Take when I Really Need to Hear from God
Key Verse: 2 Kings 7:1, “Then Elisha said, “Hear the word of the Lord…”
What steps can I take when I really need to hear from God?
Introduction: Throughout the Bible, we read about prophets and other men and women of God who implored their people to hear the word of the Lord. Obviously, God earnestly wanted His people to hear His voice…He still does!
So how do we hear God when He speaks to us today? What steps can we take to make ourselves ready to hear what He has to say? We tend to complicate the process. When we want to ask God what He desires in our lives, we often act as though we would like a phone call from Heaven in which the Lord gives a detailed plan for the next five years.
Developing daily spiritual disciplines helps us to hear the Lord’s voice clearly and seek His direction continually. Ponder the following basic steps you can take to enable you to hear the Lord when He speaks to you:
1. Read God’s Word. By reading God’s word everyday we begin to see His established order for our lives. We learn about God’s truth, mercy, love, and forgiveness. When you read, pose questions:
- Are there any guide points for my decision making?
- Are there any errors to avoid in my conversations?
- Are there any sins to forsake in my thinking?
- Are there any commands to obey?
- Are there any attitudes to eliminate?
- Are there any attitudes to develop?
- Are there any examples to follow?
- Are there any things to be thankful for?
- Are there any promises to assure me?
- Are there any implications behind the writing?
- Are there any definitions for key words?
- Are there any motives for certain actions?
- Are there any attributes of God seen?
2. Seek Him in Prayer. Many times, bowing our heads is the best way to see God’s face and hear His voice. In opening ourselves up before the Lord, we can honestly discuss our circumstances with Him, listening for His direction as we remain still. Prayer is more than just a wish list for God. It’s an intimate conversation in which we interact with Him. In the model prayer that Jesus Himself gave to us, The Lord’s Prayer, He tells us to call on “Our Father”. We need to be talking to God as if he were our father, because He is.
3. Meditation. Dwelling on what God has spoken to our hearts is a great way to let His truths take root in our souls. Not only will what we read and hear from Him impact our lives, but by meditating on it, God has the building materials to lay an unshakable foundation in our hearts. The psalmist said, “I have more understanding than all my teachers, for Your testimonies are my meditation” (Psalms 119:99). Meditation involves studying a passage of scripture, memorizing it, praying about it, and exhorting oneself to fulfill it. Many Christians say they are meditating in the Word when they are simply reading it. As crucial that is, it is not meditating. It is wonderful to just read through the different stories of God’s Word, but to meditate is more emotionally deep. Spiritual success depends on the constant study and application of God’s Word. The Bible tells us in Duet. 6:6-9, “These words, which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand and they shall be as frontals on your forehead. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.” The Hebrew word translated "meditate" speaks of what a cow does after grazing all day. As she chews the cud over and over again, she extracts every nutrient. In other words, to meditate means to ponder a section of the Word day and night, extracting more from its inexhaustible supply each time (Jon Cursor). We are to memorize God’s word for the transformation of our minds. These verses are telling us to read it, teach it, speak it, and live it. We are to do this in the morning, night, through our day. The way to do this is have the Word stored in your heart. When you are presented with certain situations through your day, the Holy Spirit will pull these words out of your memory bank for you to help you asses the options.
4. Listen. You hear with your ears. If you have normal hearing, you can’t help hearing sounds within a certain range. Listening, however, goes further, involving the mind. Genuine listening is active, meaning that it puts the mind in gear and hears everything said, looking intently for the meaning. That’s how God wants us to listen to Him, actively.