In our series on the Holy Spirit, today we are in 2 Samuel 23:2, “The Spirit of the Lord spoke by me, And His Word was on my tongue.” (NASB) I know the Holy Spirit speaks to me in various ways, my problem is that I don’t always hear. Sometimes, it is hard for me to discern the difference between His speaking and my desires or wishful thinking.
Since I’ve begun Bible Journaling, it has been much easier for me to discern His voice. Most of the time, it seems, His voice is very quiet. That still, small, voice is trying to get my attention in a world full of noise and chaos, especially in the current times in which we find ourselves.
With all the noise around us, it is hard for us to hear His whisper to our spirit. One of the ways that He speaks to us is through the reading of His Word. The Bible is our spiritual food, by reading it every day we are fed through its wisdom and instruction. Jesus prayed, “Give us this day our Daily Bread.” (Matthew 6:11 NASB) He wanted us to be fed Spiritually so that we can grow in our walk with the Lord. If we just read it like we read the paper, we can immediately forget what we’ve read. But when we dig into it, study it, meditate on it, then it becomes food upon which we can grow. Through meditating on the Word, the Holy Spirit can speak to our hearts and impart wisdom we need. We need to have open hearts, open minds, and a willing spirit to learn.
The Spirit directs us through our conscience. For me, it’s an urging or a feeling that I get that I should do or say something. It sometimes has an urgency about it, other times it seems to be just a nudging in my heart. God placed within each of us the conscience that will tap us on our shoulder and correct, instruct, or guide us in the direction He wants us to go. “For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God.” (Romans 8:14 NIV)
The Holy Spirit can speak to us through others. It could be a message we heard from a pastor, teacher, or even our family and friends. These can be anything from a confirmation of something He has been speaking to us about, to a word of knowledge, or prophecy. “If anyone speaks, they should do so as one who speaks the very words of God…” (1 Peter 4:11 NIV) We must have our hearts open to receive these utterances and to discern whether what is spoken to us actually comes from God and not from a human desire to impart human wisdom.
I’ve had instances where I’ve heard something on Christian Radio or Television that has stuck with me, and I believe it was an instance where the Holy Spirit wanted me to remember what I heard and learn from it, and it was so powerful that it remained with me. The Holy Spirit can use anything to prompt us to learn and hide that word or song in our hearts so that it carries us through times of joy, sorrow, hardships, and gratefulness.
So, knowing the Holy Spirit uses various methods to speak to us, what do we need to do to ensure that we are listening? I know for me, I need to be completely focused whether it’s reading His Word, listening to a sermon or a word spoken over me, or something I hear on the TV or radio. If I’m doing Bible Journaling, I need to be conscious of His voice to me as I read and journal. As I do my artwork, the only thing going on in the background is Christian music to help me stay focused. If I’m reading my Bible, it must be totally quiet with no interruptions, so that I can concentrate. Above all, I need to be in prayer, asking the Lord to speak to my heart, to teach me, and to open my ears, heart, and mind to be aware of His voice.
The more we exercise our spirits to listen to God’s voice speaking to us, the easier it becomes for us to hear Him. When we pay attention to those little nudges in our spirit, we are listening to that still, small voice of the Holy Spirit guiding us, encouraging us, and instructing us.