Hello. Another thread started by me. Sit down and have a coffee as we discuss(From a Roman Catholic point-of-view) about protestant claims. As you know, I’m currently a protestant(I’m converting to Roman Catholicism), and the teaching handed to me and others by protestant pastors and teachers as well as fellow disciples of the protestant good news is that the Holy Spirit himself speaks to us.
I was at a protestant home the other night as we did a book study on God and I asked how we can hear God’s voice. I prayed for a dream, a vision, even to hear he audible voice of God himself tell me his will and direction. I prayed this to God secretly because I wanted him to give me a vision, a dream or to hear His audible voice on whether I should join the Roman Catholic Church or stay protestant. My prayer went unanswered and I wondered why. It is according to His will to lead me to the Roman Catholic church, right?
But the thing was that two different priests and a nun unrelated to each other responded to my concern when I asked them about this that I wasn’t eligible for the sacrament or reconcilation but I should pray a hail mary and just keep confessing my sins to God in my usual protestant way. I found this odd, yet comforting, and was not content with the answer recieved by the three people and having no direct response to God in my prayer.
I was baptized as an infant in the triune formula and christened during confirmation in the Anglican church, but here I was, no answer from God and doubting if I really had the Holy Spirit in me after all. It scared me. And it made me skeptical(secretly) of any protestant who claimed the Holy Spirit spoke to them or told them some revelation about their life and so on.
I began to wonder if these claims were merely just people confusing the Holy Spirit with their own thoughts and being led by them and emotions. So, during a bible study, I asked how come we don’t get dreams and visions from God to know his exact will especially when we pray according to His will and for his good purpose. Why don’t we hear his audible voice to ask us to do what He wants for us. People talk about surrending to Jesus all the time and being dependent on God for direction in their life, but how do you know if God wants you to do this specific action or not do it, and move to this place or this other place. What happened to drawing lots. You know what their answer was? How do we know a specific thought is not merely our own and is actually the Holy Spirit speaking to us in our own mind’s voice?
I was told we can know His will by reading the bible, and that if we heard His voice, we’d get scared just like the Israelites who heard God. And that we aren’t robots who just do as he commands.
Maybe I really don’t have the Holy Spirit. Maybe I do. I’ll know for sure once I am christened as a roman catholic and as is currently stands, I am in a state of mortal sin due to being a protestant and having done mortal sins even though I have made private confessions to God in prayer. And because the anglican christening may be illegitimate.
So, I want to know the Roman Catholic discernment on this. I obviously lack discernment about how to be led by the Holy Spirit, and am confused(maybe).
(1) What is your experience with hearing the Holy Spirit and what He wants you to do?
(2) Is the voice audible or is it a thought that pops up in your mind?
(3) Is the thought of your own voice or another?
(4) When you pray for direction, do any of you receive an answer by dreams or visions?
(5) Do you receive any kind of wisdom and knowledge from the Holy Spirit that you couldn’t have known through your own efforts and by studying?
(6) Wouldn’t protestants today who claim the Holy Spirit spoke to them or told them this and that be some kind of prophet? Wouldn’t their revelation and instruction they claim is of the Spirit actually come from their own mind rather than God’s?
(7) Protestants sincerely believe they are moved by the Holy Spirit. Would God still hear their prayers and answer them(for example, praying for someone to be healed)?
Let’s talk about Roman Catholic’s take on protestants who claim to be speaking what the Holy Spirit told them or moved then to do.