Not Hearing From God?
After I was saved, I had a dramatic experience where I was able to hear the voice of God very clearly for a span of about six weeks. During that time His voice was unmistakably clear, but gradually it faded to a barely detectable whisper. I began attending a church, reading the bible and I listened to audio sermons online. This was a time of having my mind established in the foundational truths of Christianity that I desperately needed. I don’t regret that season of my life at all. But during this time I seldom (if ever) heard the voice of God clearly for myself. Most of what I would refer to as “hearing from God” came through messages that were given by church leaders. But the day finally arrived when God wanted to teach me things that men couldn’t teach me and show me things they didn’t have a grid for. I needed to learn from a different teacher. I needed to start hearing again from God Himself. So I broke away from the teaching I had grown accustomed to and got myself under the direct instruction of the Holy Spirit. It’s been an amazing journey ever since.
Today, I don’t have anyone in my life that I would call a pastor, although I have many people whom I would call mentors. These men and women are essentially my spiritual peer group. We see each other as friends and equals. There is no structure of hierarchy in this group. We all receive encouragement, instruction, and occasionally correction from others in the group if and when we ask for it, but we tend to receive most of our instruction directly from God. I still listen to audio messages once in a while and I occasionally attend conferences. I receive benefits from reading a good book. But these sources of information are not where I get most of the direction for my personal life. They serve more as confirmation of the things God tells me personally. And none of the people I learn from have earned the right to tell me what’s best for me. That responsibility belongs solely to God.
I’m not suggesting that having a pastor is a bad thing. I think we all need someone trustworthy to help us with our walk, especially when we’re spiritually immature. I’m only relating how God needed me to stop relying mostly on teaching from men so that I could come under His direct instruction. After we’ve matured as believers, there comes a time when we need to lean more on God for direction than we do on His kids. Today I feel as though Jesus is my overseer, my covering, my big brother and the Shepherd of my soul, and the Holy Spirit is my schoolmaster. The apostle Paul shared his own story about how he did not go to Jerusalem to be taught by the other apostles after his conversion, but instead, he went to Arabia and was instructed by the Lord, personally (see Galatians chapter 1.)
It’s easy to become dependent on men and women we respect to teach us about God. Frankly, it’s probably a lot easier for most of us to listen to a podcast or video than it is to spend an hour in silence allowing God to speak our spirit. I don’t mind sharing with you what the Lord teaches me, but I would advise you not to become too dependent on me or anyone else as your main source of instruction. At God’s request, I made myself dependent on Him, and that ended my dependence on man. He honored my willingness to come to Him directly and He’s made it fairly easy for me to hear and see what He wants me to know. Had I chosen to continue relying on men, I probably would not be hearing from Him as easily as I do today. (By “easy” I don’t mean that I hear an audible voice speaking to me all day. I hear Him mostly through barely perceptible thought impressions as most people do. It’s just that after a while, discerning His voice isn’t as hard as it is at the beginning.)
If you’re content to hear from men, the Lord will allow you to be instructed by them. But if your heart’s desire is to be instructed by God, He will draw near to you and teach you Himself, like any good father would. Part of the dynamic of hearing God’s voice clearly is deciding in your heart that you want to hear from Him more than you want to hear from others. It’s not always easy to make this kind of change, but if the Lord is calling you to do it, I would advise you to pursue it wholeheartedly. You won’t regret it.
This is an excerpt from my book Hearing God’s Voice Made Simple.
Waiting excitedly for your book and right along with the first one I know it will become one of my favorites <3
Hey buddy, excellent article!
Looking forward to more!
I can’t tell you how refreshing it is to know that there is someone out there that also hears from God. The sad thing is that most Pastors, if honest, will tell you that they have never heard from God and that most of their sermons come from books or online reading material, along with Scripture. And what is even more sad is that most people think that they are unable to hear from God for themselves, so that is why they go to Church (Moses and the mountaintop and the people who were afraid to go up there) and listen to sermons. They see God as ‘GOD’ and not as their ‘Father’ who created them for a real relationship – one on one. They pray to God but they don’t stop and listen to see what He has to say because they think He doesn’t speak anymore. I honestly think that people start to somewhat understand the love of our Father once they have children for themselves. They understand the unconditional, sacrificial love they have for their own children and hopefully at some point in their lives, they will get the revelation of our Father’s love for us. The tragedy is that people think they can only learn about their Father from a collection of books that were written through different times of history by different authors and they limit Him to those books alone. They have no clue of the depth of God’s love for them and how much He LONGS to speak to them and teach them all about Himself and why they were created and how very special they are to Him. This is a topic that is a ‘pet peeve’ of mine so I guess I’ll get off my soapbox and close this mini-novel. Thank you for your books! I’m going to buy buying them…
My daughter is an example of your article, here. She, through much difficulty and travail, pressed onward, through the church, the prayer group, friends. She considers whom we call God her Father, and constantly fellowships with him. He is leading her on an amazing life!
Interesting. I have found in my life the greatest times of growth have been outside of established church boxes.
I believe the stated goal of the five…all ministry is the building up of the body. To me this means whatever ministry there is is to bring each person ministered to into greater relationship with Papa, Jesus and HS. Any other goal is unworthy of being called ministry.
Oh this is so good. I am always asking God to speak even though I know that He is always speaking. I believe its because I am so busy talking that I don’t take the time to be still and listen. And, yes, I also believe He speaks to me through impressions or thoughts that I have…its really Him, not me. I am so blessed because I have had a revelation of the Father’s love and I yearn for more revelation of that love. I want to depend solely on the Holy Spirit and not on man. I have really good mentors and a very loving pastor. He is a grace teacher and encourages me all the time to search the Scriptures for myself. He does not want me to be dependent on him. This is a lot different from many of the others that I have known most of my life. Thank you so much PM and I can’t wait until your new book is finished.
Nicely said PM. My experience is similar. I did learn some valuable things among fellow believers and it was a pastors personal witness that led me to open my heart to Jesus. After some rather harsh disillusionment during my first year in seminary decided that was not where I would find what I needed to truly know God and quit. God has engaged me in alost continuous dialogue ever since except when I have shut him out even then I could always feel him on the sideline patiently waiting for me to ask him for suggestions. Interestingly his suggestions are not always the easiest way or the most convenient way, but wow the end results always out performs mankind’s limited knowledge and reasoning.
Good stuff! I’ve had similar experiences in regards to Him being my teacher and even mentor. When I listen to podcasts it’s almost always, without exception a confirmation of what we’ve been talking about. And yet my journey is different, as it is for all of us. Often He will lead me to different teachings for instructions and confirmation. It’s like He’s saying, “Like this. So it like this……….think about it this way, etc.
Can’t wait to read the next book.
Good word and very encouraging in regards to us seeking God for ourselves and not depending on others…love it…will take serious note of it and work towards that goal of hearing God in everything …
Thank you for this. My training began last July. Coming out from under the ‘covering’ of a pastor and letting God teach me what He wanted was the best step I ever took. What I’ve learned has been more than anything I thought I could’ve asked for. So looking forward to your book!
Sounds like it’s going to be an awesome book, one I need to read. Please notify me when it is released.
If you sign up for my book announcements, you’ll be notified whenever a new book comes out and when it goes on sale or is available for free. You can sign up by putting your name and e-mail address in the widget in the right-hand sidebar near the top of the page.
Thanks for dropping by Emma.
Excellent! We all need this revelation.
Totally agree and I have been through this too. The Lord seems very quiet to me in my personal life again right now and I am a bit miffed by this…..I believe maybe I am not pressing in even in the dryness…like He wants more of me to hear more of Him. What do you sense? Can’t wait to read your book!
Nice article. I’ve been feeling like.. Guided I guess, to make this jump for some time. Just learning how is.. Well it’s interesting. It can be difficult to know if God is saying not to do something *I* want to do, because I’ve prayed so earnestly for my desires to be in line with his.
Wow! from this little article you have answered so many questions I have waiting for father to confirm. Exactly as you have written is me right now, I now have the confirmation, I can’t reveal to much now as I’m a pastor and will shake the foundations too much.
After 23 years as a Christian I came across Dr Mark Virkler’s teaching on hearing the voice of God. I recommend it to any Christian. Check him out on Youtube
Dear PM, you are so blessed to have spiritual mentors to help and encourage you. My story is similar to yours in that after I was saved, (I was raised Catholic…) I began attending a Oneness Pentecostal church, which fed me spiritually for about two years. As I grew in my knowledge of and exposure to God, Holy Spirit revealed to me the inaccuracy of their disbelief in the Trinity, and I felt that I could no longer pretend to embrace this doctrine, so I left. Unfortunately, I lost several friends/ mentors who believe in this very strongly, which saddens me. I have been searching for a church home ever since, but in the few churches I have visited, or started to attend, I have observed some type of biblical discrepancy or man-made focus that takes away from God. Although I would love to belong to a congregation-someday!- I am now in the habit of seeking God for myself, and encourage myself through your website postings, and other Holy-Spirit inspired books and articles, and, of course, God’s Word. All through my search, I have been led by the prompting that there is always more of God’s Kingdom to strive for, which renews my reaching for Him daily. I am so grateful that Holy Spirit has led me to your website, as I believe that you are walking with The Lord in truth, thank you so much for sharing!
YES! Lots are getting set free from making the pastor a king. Wonderful excerpt.
I so agree. My best teacher,mentor,friend to date… Holy Spirit! ❤️❤️❤️
Praise God. This makes a lot so clear.
It is good to know you have a fellow traveler out there who functions as you do so you don’t feel so alone. Thank you for how clearly you spoke and shared. It blesses me and brings me comfort and peace. Bonnie
Thank you for the direct clarity of this post. Yours is another affirmation to me of the direction Father God is leading me. It’s somewhat uncomfortable to let go of the theology I’ve been taught to idolize, and to idolize the Bible as well, for that matter. But these aren’t “the main thing” are they? A direct, intimate, personal relationship with God, that is the Main Thing.
Again, many thanks for the nourishment,
Lew Curtiss / http://creativeharmonies.wordpress.com/
I was raised catholic. I was shocked I was so blind when I listened to radio podcasts and learned Soooo much more about the people of the bible and prophecy. The catholic religion has not been a good source of education. And has so many man made beliefs.
Yes I agree to a point but it seems like God has CHOSEN to speak through men and women. Maybe He does this in order for expressions of love, community and an example of the unity of the triune Godhead. We can and should learn to hear from God ourselves and we can be overdependant on hearing from others., but God doesn’t desire that we are independent. I know plenty of people who claim to hear from God but are total fruitcakes. How, for example, do you go about building one another up without words. Tongues are not as valuable because they are not understood without an interpretation. Etc.. It seems like we need to hear THROUGH others too.
Thank you PM. I appreciate your posting so very much. Every time I felt Father calling me to sperate myself to be under His teaching my friends would always say this couldn’t be right cause I needed to be at church and listening to the pastor. Thank you for letting me know i am not alone, the Father does enjoy talking separately to His children.
So looking forward to this book PM and it’s priceless to have a direct intimate relationship with God and to be taught by Him … It saves you the risk of the religious , legal teachings of man also the teachings that don’t produce an abundant life that God has for us.. So I am totally for being instructed by God ?
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BgaHaioAjyg I’m reminded of this song after reading this. Thank you!