Hearing God's voice is the desire of many - but few seem to feel that it's their personal experience.
Why is God's voice so difficult to hear? Or is it?
There are some verses in 1 Kings 19 - I encourage you to read the entire chapter to get a feel for the context - but I'll paste in a portion that helps us understand a little about God's voice.
IKings 19:11-12 11 And he said, Go forth, and stand upon the mount before the LORD. And, behold, the LORD passed by, and a great and strong wind rent the mountains, and brake in pieces the rocks before the LORD; but the LORD was not in the wind: and after the wind an earthquake; but the LORD was not in the earthquake: 12 And after the earthquake a fire; but the LORD was not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice. (KJV)
These verses are the experience of Elijah - a prophet of the Lord.
After the tremendous display of natural force God spoke very quietly to Elijah. The verses indicate that perhaps Elijah was looking for a message from God in the wind, the earthquake, and the fire - but the message came as a still small voice to Elijah.
Suppose that Elijah had assumed that there was a message in one of those natural events - he might have left his cave intent on a mission of some sort - and missed the voice of God altogether.
Perhaps there's a little lesson for us here as we seek to hear God's voice.
Often we want to think that God gives us signs - and perhaps he does. Maybe we rush about doing one thing and another - feeling fairly certain that God is behind it - yet how often do we suffer from a sense that something isn't quite right?
Perhaps we didn't wait to hear the still small voice of God. Hearing God's voice may not be possible while we're frantically doing everything we think we need to be doing. I'm not dogmatic about this - I'm just throwing out the possibility.
You know, there's a verse that says simply "Be still and know that I am God." There is a thread running throughout the Bible and other spiritual books as well that indicates that stillness and quietness are essential for hearing God's voice.
Consider the example of Jesus - he often went out alone into the mountains to pray - he was finding a place of quietness so he could hear that still small voice.
We all lead busy lives. We're surrounded by "noise" - all of it competing for our attention. We have endless "to do" lists. So where do we find time to be still and know God?
In it all we'd love to think that we've got a system in place to develop a relationship with God and it's working on autopilot. Relationships just don't grow on autopilot do they? That's where becoming still to hear God's voice comes in.
Sometimes it's like Elijah - you wait until the noise subsides. Or like Jesus, you seek a quiet place to be alone with God.
Find your stillness in any way you can and tune in to that still small voice of God.