Faithlife Sermons

How Do I Hear God's Voice

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Intro:
Welcome and talk about picnic
Many of the messages Jesus gave i the Bible were in response to questions people posed to him.
One of the Questions that you asked was How do I hear God’s voice?
It assumes God is speaking.
Some today don’t believe that… some believe God stopped speaking with the death of the apostles.
Jesus told us he would send his HS to teach us, so God is a speaking God. Now, we need to make sure what we are hearing lines up with the whole of scripture. God will never contradict himself.
1 John 4:1 The Living Bible
1 Dearly loved friends, don’t always believe everything you hear just because someone says it is a message from God: test it first to see if it really is. For there are many false teachers around,
Just because we hear it, or someone comes to us and says, I have a word for you, we still have to make sure it’s God and that it lines up with the WOG.
“If God doesn’t speak today, then the greatest disservice we could ever do to people is to tell them that they could have a personal relationship with God.” Dallas Willard
God wants to have a personal relationship with you and with me.
Throughout the Bible you read, he who has ears let him hear...
3rd Verse - God said...
Jesus - the relationship that God would have with us would be like sheep and a shepherd.
John 10:3–5 NIV84
3 The watchman opens the gate for him, and the sheep listen to his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. 4 When he has brought out all his own, he goes on ahead of them, and his sheep follow him because they know his voice. 5 But they will never follow a stranger; in fact, they will run away from him because they do not recognize a stranger’s voice.”
Isaiah - Here’s the way… follow in it.
ILL - Talking to someone you know well on phone, you recognize their voice. One of the ways we can hear God’s voice is the regularity you speak to him.
I believes that God speaks to us ...
ILL -
Call to ministry - God showed me speaking to people ...
Car - God spoke about the car
Church - God led us to begin the church
Here are some reasons why we do not hear him clearly… God is speaking but we have a lot going on that can keep us from hearing.

Weapons of Mass Distraction

Busyness.

It’s hard to have a relationship with someone when you don’t have the time for that relationship. We have so many distractions in our lives that prevent us from hearing from God.
Luke 10:39–40 AMP
39 And she had a sister named Mary, who seated herself at the Lord’s feet and was listening to His teaching. 40 But Martha [overly occupied and too busy] was distracted with much serving; and she came up to Him and said, Lord, is it nothing to You that my sister has left me to serve alone? Tell her then to help me [to lend a hand and do her part along with me]!
You have to make time for God. I put God on my calendar. You have to make time for God or you will not have time for God.
Psalm 46:10 NIV84
10 “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.”
The quieter you become, the more you can hear.
Maybe you should give Sunday to the Lord… don’t do chores… Dedicate another hour or so… take a walk and spend some time with the Lord.
The second weapon of mass distraction is.

Competing Voices.

IOW, God can be yelling at you, but if you have 100 others yelling at you, you will not hear God.
Football Stadium - everyone is yelling at you, you can’t make out what they are saying. If you put one person across the field from you with no one else there, you can hear them speaking with a normal voice. You can always hear more clearly when you get rid of competing voices.
Jesus was always talking but not everyone was listening.
Luke 14:18–20 NIV84
18 “But they all alike began to make excuses. The first said, ‘I have just bought a field, and I must go and see it. Please excuse me.’ 19 “Another said, ‘I have just bought five yoke of oxen, and I’m on my way to try them out. Please excuse me.’ 20 “Still another said, ‘I just got married, so I can’t come.’
People had all kinds of stuff that kept them from hearing and doing what Jesus wanted them to do.
Think through some of the competition to God. If they can’t be eliminated, minimize them.
We spend too much time on FB and not enough time seeking his face.
We need to reduce digital… FB, Twitter, Snapchat, Instagram… Distracted… driving...
people together texting…
Kids 8-18 spend 7.5 hours per day on media. 53 hours per week… to one hour of God in church. Social media has it’s place, and it’s not first place.
Don’t say good morning America until you say good morning God.
Hebrews 12:1–2 GW
1 Since we are surrounded by so many examples ⌊of faith⌋, we must get rid of everything that slows us down, especially sin that distracts us. We must run the race that lies ahead of us and never give up. 2 We must focus on Jesus, the source and goal of our faith. He saw the joy ahead of him, so he endured death on the cross and ignored the disgrace it brought him. Then he received the highest position in heaven, the one next to the throne of God.
Jesus is not going to come try to out yell the world around you.
To hear God’s voice, you have to turn down the world’s volume.
The third weapon of mass distraction is

Unprepared Heart.

Jesus is speaking more than you think, but it’s not sticking because you have not prepared yourself. We have to prepare our hearts. Maybe spend 5 -10 min before church praying.
Matthew 13:19 The Message
19 When anyone hears news of the kingdom and doesn’t take it in, it just remains on the surface, and so the Evil One comes along and plucks it right out of that person’s heart. This is the seed the farmer scatters on the road.
God comes to a prepared environment.
IOW, god’s going to speak, and it will seem louder when we have prepared to hear.
2 Corinthians 7:1 The Message
1 With promises like this to pull us on, dear friends, let’s make a clean break with everything that defiles or distracts us, both within and without. Let’s make our entire lives fit and holy temples for the worship of God.
Figure out a way to get my life right...
ILL - of the sound. 17.4 KH audio
The older you get, your ears hear less. The less you are able to hear.
Shopping center in England - began putting an annoying sound at 17.4 KH. The older people didn’t hear it.
We have actually learned to tune God out. Jesus unless you become like a child… No matter how old you are, you can still become like a little child and get rid of the junk in your life… come back to innocence.
Example of this...

God speaks

not in notes
1 Samuel 3:1–3 NIV
1 The boy Samuel ministered before the Lord under Eli. In those days the word of the Lord was rare; there were not many visions. 2 One night Eli, whose eyes were becoming so weak that he could barely see, was lying down in his usual place. 3 The lamp of God had not yet gone out, and Samuel was lying down in the house of the Lord, where the ark of God was.
1 Samuel 3:3–11 NIV
3 The lamp of God had not yet gone out, and Samuel was lying down in the house of the Lord, where the ark of God was. 4 Then the Lord called Samuel. Samuel answered, “Here I am.” 5 And he ran to Eli and said, “Here I am; you called me.” But Eli said, “I did not call; go back and lie down.” So he went and lay down. 6 Again the Lord called, “Samuel!” And Samuel got up and went to Eli and said, “Here I am; you called me.” “My son,” Eli said, “I did not call; go back and lie down.” 7 Now Samuel did not yet know the Lord: The word of the Lord had not yet been revealed to him. 8 A third time the Lord called, “Samuel!” And Samuel got up and went to Eli and said, “Here I am; you called me.” Then Eli realized that the Lord was calling the boy. 9 So Eli told Samuel, “Go and lie down, and if he calls you, say, ‘Speak, Lord, for your servant is listening.’ ” So Samuel went and lay down in his place. 10 The Lord came and stood there, calling as at the other times, “Samuel! Samuel!” Then Samuel said, “Speak, for your servant is listening.” 11 And the Lord said to Samuel: “See, I am about to do something in Israel that will make the ears of everyone who hears about it tingle.
There are three things in this text that give us an inkling of how to create an environment to hear from the Lord. God is speaking and will speak

God speaks as we READ GOD’S WORD. Samuel was laying down b the lamp

Psalm 119:105 NLT
105 Your word is a lamp to guide my feet and a light for my path.
You can trust the Bible. It has proven over and over. We need to read God’s word. Don’t go a single day without reading at least a verse or a proverbs… Read GW. OYB, Devotional with reading plan in the back.
Psalm 119:147 NLT
147 I rise early, before the sun is up; I cry out for help and put my hope in your words.

God speaks as we CULTIVATE HIS PRESENCE. He was by the ark

He was by the ark.
The ark was important because that’s where the physical presence of God lived. In the NT, that place is on worship. If you are trying to find God, worship… you’ll find him. God loves worshippers.
Nothing cultivates the presence of God in us like passionate worship. Some of you guys need to let loose.
Genesis 3:8 NKJV
8 And they heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden.
Song - In the Garden - I come to the garden alone, where the dew is still on the roses....
You want to hear God’s voice… go to the garden. Read his word. Worship him.

God speaks as we GET PLANTED IN THE CHURCH. He was in the temple

He was in the temple
You have to get involved.
Psalm 92:11–13 NIV84
11 My eyes have seen the defeat of my adversaries; my ears have heard the rout of my wicked foes. 12 The righteous will flourish like a palm tree, they will grow like a cedar of Lebanon; 13 planted in the house of the Lord, they will flourish in the courts of our God.
Samuel was in the temple by the lamp… You have to get plugged in. He will speak to you in a small group… in the growth track… in a seminar.
ILL - How many of you have gone somewhere other than where you told your mama?
Friend who went to a Doobie brothers concert. People smoking dope all over the place. They were seeing all kinds of stuff because they are all high. He said he was seeing Moses, Elijah and the prophets and just knew he was going to hell. Why? because he was raised on church and had a praying mother.
Testimony
Saved in a small group -CL
Baptized in church
Got into small groups and developed life long friends - in church
Filled with the Spirit - in church
Met pastor Kathy - in jail… but in church
Called to ministry in church
God will speak to you, but you have to put yourself in the right environment. Banana’s don’t grow in Alaska

If you want the right fruit, you’ve got to get in the right environement.

You asked for it. You want to hear God’s voice…
Read GW
Worship
Plant yourself in the church
Prayer time
HS speak to me right now.
Touch peoples lives
Show us how we need to slow down and prepare our hearts to hear.
Salvation
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