Know the Voice

Billie JaussBy Billie Jauss9 Minutes

Excerpt taken from Chapter 8 “Know the Voice” of Distraction Detox: Release Emotional Barriers. Restructure Priorities. Realize God’s Best. by Billie Jauss


God speaks to us in many ways: through His Word, the wind whispering in the treetops, or a scripture shared by a trusted friend. What is God saying to you?

The Lord communicates in different forms. Many of us will never hear the audible voice of God this side of heaven, but there are other ways we can hear Him.

How do we know the voice we hear is God and not our desires tainted by outside noise? We run it through the spiritual sound check.

Does what we’re hearing align with scripture? We read the Bible for our scripture check. His Word is alive and active. With a disciplined practice of reading God’s Word, we can learn more about Him and what He says.

When we read His Word, our ears are trained to hear His voice. Reading the Bible is a first step in connecting with Him more profoundly. But don’t stop with a rote routine of reading. Sit quietly. Ask the Lord to speak to you. As you read the Word, who God is and what He says becomes easier to understand.

As we fall more and more in love with Jesus, we learn to listen. We can determine what lines up with scripture and what doesn’t.

Exchanging emotional barriers with scripture increases our hearing. We hear His call because we know His voice. Effective listening comes with an open communication loop with Him through knowing scripture.

When we are focused on God’s Word, scripture comes to mind, confirming His help. In our prayer time, we feel a sense of peace, warmth, and excitement. God is with us. He is ready to answer us—maybe not in the way we want, but He will answer according to His purpose and plan. Intentionally set aside time to listen to God.

I know the essence of the verses, maybe not the exact wording. When I begin to question God’s voice, the words pop into my head. The words may not be in perfect order, but I know they are of God. The more we read His Word, the more it becomes part of our spiritual language.

Does what we’ve heard affirm God’s character? Much like the voice lining up with scripture, we want to make sure what we hear aligns with who God is. In chapter five, we looked at examples of who God is and what He promises. Use God’s character as a gauge.

If God is love, but what you hear is to say something hurtful to someone else, that is not God’s voice. Are you feeling hatred toward an individual? That is not from God. If God is good, but you hear you are a failure, those words are not the voice of God.

Keep the list of God’s character traits and what He promises close by for reference. Measure what you hear by His character.

Is what we are hearing beyond our capabilities? If we can do it on our own for our image or for others to notice, then we will probably rely on our voice and our power rather than the Lord’s. Do we have to rely on His strength because ours is not sufficient?

If the answer we hear is based on what we already know how to accomplish without God’s help, then we already have that under control. When God calls us into a space where we can only accomplish the task with His help, we are hearing His voice.

Is it pleasing to Go? We always want to stay on the side of pleasing and glorifying God. We often find our place of comfort and safety in what we know and what makes us feel good. What pleases us is often our natural desire, safety, and comfort. But pleasing God is the safest place we can be.

God speaks to us every day. He invites us to draw close to Him and listen. Sometimes He whispers; other times His voice is loud and clear. Almost deafening.

Trying to hear from God can create frustration and confusion when we want an answer but don’t seem to get it. Maybe we are asking the wrong question. Ask God what He is teaching you in the waiting. Don’t get stuck in doubt and discouragement. Pause, pray, and pursue God. He is there, ready to guide and lead you.

Is it being confirmed? Dreams, thoughts, and prayer are three ways God speaks. Have there been times when you had to make a weighty decision, and you dreamed about how God would walk you through it? Are those thoughts lining up with God’s Word? Are prayers giving great peace? Has a sermon spoken directly to you?

When God speaks, the words, the scripture, and the prayer align with what we’ve been debating. The movie you are watching may use the same language you have been praying when asking for direction. A podcast topic may be so applicable that God seems to speak directly into your heart. That, my friend, is confirmation.

Do trusted friends agree the voice is God’s? A spiritually mature person can guide you through prayer patterns and practices to help deepen and broaden your walk with God. Becoming part of a prayer group is one way to practice the prayer disciplines.

When you feel lonely and isolated, reach out to someone you admire and trust. It may be someone at church, in a Bible study group, or a friend from the past. Older or younger. Different economic standing. Different race. Different culture. Stretch your inner circle to include many types of people. Include others in the group if you want to enlarge it. I suggest pairing up into accountability partners when the circle grows.

Begin your time with prayer. Invite the Holy Spirit to be part of your time together. Even if it is only two of you, start with prayer.

If the group is larger, encourage a different person to pray each time. Encourage one another to listen to the Lord. Help others discern God’s call. There’s no right way to pray. Be as authentic and honest with the Lord as you would want your child to be with you. Prayer is a conversation with Jesus. Listen for His response.

Groups have gathered in my home, on rooftop terraces in cities, at picnic tables at a ballpark, and online. No one way or place is any better than another. Anytime you take time is the best time. Take time for one another, help each person in the group to hear God’s voice. With each desire for guidance, pause and listen for God’s guidance. You can and will hear Him when you listen.

Listen for God’s voice in everything you do, everywhere you go. He’s the one who will keep you on track. Don’t assume you know it all. Run to Him.

Know His voice. Hear His call.

Order your copy of Distraction Detox: Release Emotional Barriers. Restructure Priorities. Realize God’s Best. by Billie Jauss