Hearing the Voice of the Spirit
The Holy Spirit is not an impersonal force, but a real person who guides and speaks to us.
In the past, I have written about the advantage of Jesus departing the earth for heaven and leaving our great friend, the Holy Spirit, behind to be with us. The Holy Spirit being with us on earth is an advantage because he helps us in our weaknesses, he teaches us, he works through our prayers, he helps us with our purpose, and he convicts us of sin. Through these things the Spirit empowers us for our number one mission: to glorify Jesus. But what if we feel like we can’t hear the Holy Spirit? Then what do we do?
PRAY AND ASK JESUS TO ALLOW US TO HEAR HIM
In Christ, we have fellowship with the Holy Spirit (2 Cor. 13:14; Phil. 2:1). He dwells in us. He empowers us. He wants to talk to us, and there are three ways he normally does.
- The way he most often speaks to us is through the Bible. The Holy Spirit inspired the writing of the Bible, and it makes sense that this is the most common way we hear from him today (2 Pet. 1:21). Pray as you read Scripture that you would have ears to hear what he’s saying (1 Cor. 2:14-15).
- The Holy Spirit is not an impersonal force, but rather a real person. This means that he can also speak to us through our minds or audibly (Acts 8:29; 10:19; 11:12; 13:2). The Holy Spirit has never spoken to me audibly, but he normally brings thoughts to my mind every day.
- The Holy Spirit talks to us through a private prayer language that some people will receive, but not everyone (1 Cor. 12:8-10, 29-30; 1 Cor. 13:1;14:2, 4, 14).
Ask Jesus that the Holy Spirit would speak to you in all three ways.
CONTINUALLY REPENT AND PRAY
It’s possible for us to grieve (Eph. 4:30), resist (Acts 7:51), and insult (Heb. 10:29) the Holy Spirit. We are told in Acts 8:22-23 to repent and pray when the Holy Spirit brings sin to our minds. This is critical to hearing the Holy Spirit, and the part most people miss. We see in Ephesians 4:4-30 that sins like bitterness, slander, anger, and wrath are like poison to our system. They’re the equivalent of “plugging our ears” from hearing what the Holy Spirit is saying to us. Repentance and prayer help us “unplug” our ears. If the Holy Spirit is bringing sin to your mind right now, take the opportunity to hear him more clearly by repenting and praying to Jesus.
Repentance and prayer help us “unplug” our ears.
If the only thing that’s stopping us from hearing the Holy Spirit is unrepentant sin, we have to realize Jesus already paid for that sin on the cross, and we need to repent of it. We need to give our sin to Jesus. It might be the only thing that’s stopping us from hearing our friend.
The Holy Spirit wants to speak to us. Are you listening?