How does He speak to you? How can you discern whether its God or the Devil speaking to you or just your imagination?
Are the thoughts in words that you normally use? Scripture also tells us to test the spirits. One of the ways the Romans tested whether or not individuals were truly Christians was to ask them to curse God. It’s impossible.
Only in the Spirit can we say, “Jesus is Lord!” These are the first words that should come out of our mouths.
God will command no man to sin.
Are the words in line with Scripture, the circumstances of your life, and the magisterium?
A local Quaker community taught my parents many years ago to sit in a quiet place, empty the mind of all cares and concerns as best they could, and just sit. They said the quietest voice they hear will be that of God. Personally I never bought this idea, but my mom said it worked for her.
I believe God speaks to me through what we commonly call intuition, hunches, inspired ideas that come from nowhere. It’s a daily thing and the dialog goes both ways.
I hear the prompting of God when sermons, news articles, episodes on TV etc all deal with a subject I am struggling with - for example the need to forgive. My confessor said as much. When you keep running into the same things, God is trying to get your attention.
God does speak to us in many and various ways. As KyPerson mentioned, one of those is by running into the same things. The prompting of the Holy Spirit can often be felt, rather than heard, as intuition. It is that inspired idea that comes from seemly nowhere.
Scripture tells us that God’s voice was not in the thunder nor in the earthquake, but in the “still quiet voice.” This is what the parents of CelticWarlord learned to hear.
Interesting…I like that approach!
Interesting. Could you elaborate on this? What do you mean by “listen closely to it”?
Yes God speaks to me but not really in words as such, but also not in not words. As the others have said in intuition and feelings as well as through others and through scripture. I’ve had words of hymns or scripture pop into my head at the right moment to tell me what I need to hear or should hear or do. But also a sort of quiet way of ‘speaking’ without words but where something is conveyed to you. I actually think God speaks to us in another way beyond the language we use with each other.
As for how I know it’s not the devil in what is said/felt/experienced. The devil may ‘act’ good for a time but there is a kind of upset and distress and angst in the contact. You become worked up and distressed and not in a good way. It is very easy to be trapped or fooled here. I think anyway, I am no expert. You can always turn to God at this time. Also if what it is about is against scriptures or God. This is harder cos the devil can tempt you to do less good things, ie don’t pray now, rather tidy your room or go for a walk. Not a sin but it’s clearly the least ‘holy’ thing to do when you stop and think of it.
If God is the contact there is peace and gentleness and He seeks to build you up and even if you feel sad because of your sins or He is teaching or reprimanding you there is no harsh feelings only peace. You’ll likely feel lighter and better about things and joyful. I dont know if it is the same for everyone or the same all the time. I am not experienced in all this.
Like other folks, God speaks to me in so many gentle ways. Sometimes it is in a new found joy in some words in the Holy Bible, a gentle voice (not in my head), through my imagination (actually beyond what I could imagine), in the unexpected beauty of his creation, or an unexpected blessing that lifts me when I am feeling a little despondent. The blessings are like “I love you” notes.
I test anything that appears to be, or is private revelations against Scripture and the Church’s teachings. As I am so fallible, I don’t trust myself.
I tried your method. I didnt hear any “small voice”.
God is always speaking to us. We rarely hear Him though. He speaks to us throughout our daily lives in the events of our day to day situations. To better tune into God’s voice we should aim to make Him the centre of our lives through frequent prayer, mass, Eucharistic Adoration, scripture reading, spiritual reading etc. Once we become better attuned to Him it will be easier to hear Him. We are so bombarded these days by noise, distractions, pressures, worries, entertainment etc that we think He does not speak to us when in fact He does. We just don’t pay attention or look out for the signs and ways He is communicating with us. The book “ The Way of Divine Love” by Saint Josefa Menendez is wonderful and is one of many outstanding books wherein the Saints tell us of how the Lord communicated with them. If we read these books we will see that we too can tune into the Lord’s voice. It is a long process in the school of the Lord but He leads us gently but surely if we let Him.
It has happened to the mystics. It happened to me on very few occasions in life. When I thought I was going to get married it happened. It also happened before my father passed away. But this is very rare and I think this topic is forbidden on this forum as we are often discouraged to share personal private revelation. If it happens run it by your confessor or spiritual director. Usually if it truly is God you will know it in your heart and the whole depth of your being because in him there is no error or impurity or doubt. So be sure you are not deceiving yourself or being attacked by the diabolic. If it really is God you should already know in your heart.
@anon64704623 , you ask “Can I hear God’s voice ?”
My problem is I am a poor listener .
“The LORD came and stood there, calling as at the other times, “Samuel! Samuel!” Then Samuel said, “Speak, for your servant is listening.””
My prayer tends to be “Listen , Lord , your servant is speaking .”
It’s okay everybody. God spoke to me this morning. The first thing I saw on my screen when I turned on my computer this morning was a message that says “You might be tempted to drink from this town’s lovely lake after a long desert trek, but think twice….”.
The hidden reason for asking about hearing God’s voice is so that I could get enough weak evidence to prove that God does not exist. I admit that I want to believe God is just my imagination so that I could enjoy the sins of the flesh. Seems like I was wrong. Although I could not hear his tiny voice, He managed to use other ways to pass his message to me.
Sounds like a signal grace if it made you feel special. Locutions and actual voices can happen though to some but we are often seen as crazy to some.
The biggest problem from our human position is that we want God to speak to us as though he were a person. Examples from the Old Testament only further this expectation and we set ourselves up for disappointment. If it were to happen in this way it would likely result in a swelling of the ego and the “I’m special” moment we really would like to brag about. LOL
A well known Protestant preacher claims to not only hear from God, but is asked advice by said God. The very notion that God is beyond the realm we live in should dispel all such claims. We are left in a mysterious void wondering if anyone is listening. Believe me, I have felt as you do far more often than I would care to admit.
God is always speaking to us. The problem is that it is difficult for us to listen. As Adam and Eve hid in the Garden at the sound of God’s voice, so too does the Fall of Man cause us to unknowingly hide or close our ears when our Lord calls out to us. Meditation is the act of listening to God’s voice via reflection upon some sort of medium, whether it be Scripture, experience, or any other inspiring spiritual source of Grace. Contemplation is the act of directly listening to the voice of God in our lives. It evolves into a dialogue between you and God. To do this, we must learn how to be silent, both physically and spiritually. There must be a moment in prayer where we put aside any attempt to direct the conversation, any attempt to say, “This is what I think,” and wait for a reply. It might take a while and not necessarily be what you want, but God always replies.
Bishop Barron is not the only priest I’ve heard say that they agree with the modern atheists; that the god who can be located spatially and appears to be human but in a superman sense, does not exist.
I talk to myself a lot…I firmly believe that when I do this I am conversing with God and that He is conversing with me. I love the times when I can be in perfect silence because I know then that I am hearing the voice of God loud and clear through my own thoughts.
I hear it in the laughter and joy of small children at play. The cry of a newborn, the song of a bird, the lowing of cattle, the wind through the trees, the sound of thunder, and the whisper of God in an empty church. God speaks constantly in His creation. Question is, do we listen.
As an aside, Jesus said, “unless you shall be like unto these little children, you shall not see God, for such as these is the kingdom of Heaven made.” Heaven is not (or at least I don’t think it is) angels on clouds and the dulcet sounds of their harps, it is the joy of little children. I really think heaven is a pretty raucous place. And given that, why do so many monks treasure silence? Doesn’t make sense to me.