Do you need help with…
• Hearing the voice of God?
• Forgiving someone who is difficult to forgive?
• Overcoming stubborn sins, bad habits, life-controlling issues?
• Resolving feelings of guilt and shame / forgiving yourself?
• Overcoming anxiety, fear, or other negative emotions?
• Making sense of the Bible?
• Finding happiness when your life is a mess?
If you’ve answered yes to any of those, I would like to help you, starting with this free resource on hearing the voice of God.
How to hear the voice of God
How does God speak to you?
The answer to that question is going to be a little different for each person because we’re all unique. But I also think that God is trying to speak to each of us and will speak if we’re willing to listen.
For me, God usually whispers to me with a quiet inner voice in my mind. For example, one cold January day years ago, I was out taking a walk on a trail in the country, feeling pretty down about everything that was going wrong in my life at the time. After pouring out my heart to God, I heard Him say, “Listen.”
So I listened. Nothing. Silence. Chirp. Silence. Chirp. More silence. I was listening, but no one was talking except a couple crazy birds that forgot to fly south for the winter.
Then God spoke: “Even though it’s gonna be a long winter, they still sing.”
How about you? How does God speak to you?
Below I would like to share with you some things I’ve learned along the way about hearing the voice of God.
The ability to carry on a conversation with God is the birthright of any child of God. Prayer was never meant to be a monologue that ends with “In Jesus’ name, Amen.” Rather it is an ongoing dialogue between you and God, filled with laughter at times, tears at times, chit chat at times, serious business sometimes, jokes at other times.
You have a Father in heaven who likes you, who cares about you, who likes spending time with you. Your Father expects to have a relationship with you, just like a good father in any reasonably healthy family wants to have a relationship with his children.
The Bible confirms this expectation. In John 10:27, Jesus says that His followers can hear His voice. Romans 8:16 tells us the God’s Spirit talks with our spirits. 2 Corinthians 13:14 invites us to experience “fellowship” with God’s Holy Spirit. The Bible is filled with examples of people hearing from God (Genesis 15:4, 1 Samuel 3, 1 Kings 6:11, 1 Kings 13:1, 1 Kings 17:2, Jeremiah 2:1, Acts 8:29, etc.). Jesus tells His disciples that the Spirit will guide them into all truth (John 16:13).
But suppose you don’t experience this kind of give and take, this kind of ongoing conversation with God in your life. Does that mean that you are somehow a second class citizen, that there’s something wrong with you?
Not at all. For many years I didn’t hear from God, and I was clueless as to how to go about learning this process. This isn’t something that is regularly taught in most churches, so let me share some things with you that I’ve found helpful.
This isn’t spooky. It isn’t weird. You probably won’t hear an audible voice, though you might. You probably won’t see any visions, though you might. You probably won’t have any angels appear to you, though you might. Mostly, hearing from God is just a quiet inner voice or an inner sense of what God is saying to you.
Is it foolproof? No. You might think you’re hearing from God when you’re not, though I’ll give you some suggestions that will help you validate what you get when you ask God a question. If there’s ever a conflict between what you think you’re hearing from God and what God clearly says in the Bible, go with the Bible every time. God isn’t going to tell you to steal or commit adultery or engage in other behaviors that are contrary to what He has revealed in the Bible.
Value the Bible
I started hearing from God by paying close attention to the Bible. I would ask God a question, and He would bring a Bible verse to mind to answer it. He still does that. For example, one day I asked Jesus if I should be concerned about knowing the difference between His voice and the Father’s voice. His response? I and the Father are one. That’s a direct quote from John 10:30. At other times, God would give me insights through His Spirit when I was pondering a Bible passage.
If you want to hear from God, it just makes sense that you would value the Bible. God has already spoken through His written word. Are you reading it or listening to it daily? (Billy Graham kept an open Bible near him all the time. That way, when he walked by it, he paused for a moment to read a bit of it. I put the Bible on audio on my phone and have it playing next to my pillow all night.) Do you value it? Are you pondering it? Do you memorize portions of it? Hearing from God means treasuring what He has to say, and the place to start listening is with the Bible.
Value what God says
To hear God’s voice, we must value what He has to say.
Jesus said not to throw your pearls to the pigs. (Matthew 7:6) In other words, you don’t give what is sacred and valuable to people who value nothing, people for whom nothing is sacred. In a similar way, a close intimate relationship with God depends on your willingness to honor Him. That doesn’t mean that you need to be perfect, or that you need to clean up your act before you come to Him, but it does mean that it is arrogant to assume that God will talk with you if you refuse to do what He says. In fact, a rebellious attitude opens the door to all kinds of deception. (See 1 Kings 22, for example.) You will think that you are hearing from God when may be hearing from a deceiving spirit.
I knew someone who regularly heard from God. One day God asked her to do something she didn’t want to do. She refused to do it, and from that point forward she couldn’t hear from God at all for a long time.
In our “question authority” culture, obedience is almost a dirty word. But God takes our obedience very seriously. Part of having faith in God is trusting Him enough to lead while we follow.
More on hearing the voice of God below, but here’s how you can get spiritual help on some of the issues I mentioned at the top of this page. (There’s also more information below.)
Back to hearing the voice of God…
Ask and listen
Part of hearing from God is having the faith to believe that God can figure out how to talk to you. God has been talking to people for thousands of years. He isn’t going to have any trouble figuring out a way to get His thoughts across to you–if you’re willing to listen. You could pray, “God, I want to hear from you. Please silence all other voices. Make Your word clear to me.” Then ask Him a question and wait for the answer. You might get something right away. You might get something in a minute or two. You might not get anything at all. If you don’t, no worries. Sometimes I ask God a question and get nothing. No big deal. I just figure He didn’t have anything He wanted to say about that, and I let it go. Or maybe He will say something later.
One of the areas where God’s voice has been particularly helpful to me is in the area of my own hurts. Like everyone, at times I’ve felt like a failure, I’ve worried, I’ve been stressed. As I’ve come to God with these anxieties, He has spoken words of encouragement to me that have completely changed my life. “God, today I feel like I can’t do anything right. Is that true?” I wait and almost always get a response. Most of the time these responses weren’t earth shattering words, but just simple words like: “You’re okay,” or “I like you.” But they were earth shattering to me because they came from God. Even though my circumstances might not have changed, my whole experience changed because I saw the same circumstances through a different set of lenses.
Trust but verify
The Bible says not to believe every spirit, but test the spirits to make sure they come from God. (1 John 4:1)
How do we test or verify?
#1 God’s Spirit will affirm that Jesus lived as a man and that He is in charge. (1 John 4:1-3, 1 Corinthians 12:3)
#2 God’s message will conform to His word, the Bible. That’s one reason why it’s important to get to know your Bible. Knowing your Bible gives you foundational knowledge that makes it harder for you to be deceived.
#3 When God’s Spirit is finished, there will be peace. He might point out your need to make a change, but He never paralyzes or condemns. He always gives you a very clear path to freedom. That path may involve making a hard choice, but it will be clear. God is not the author of confusion. God’s message will not leave you with anxiety or fear. If you’re willing to obey God, a message from God will, in the end, leave you with peace.
#4 And following His directions will result in a good life where you stay healthy and bring much good into the lives of others. If the messages you are receiving, pull you in a different direction or result in something other than love, joy, peace and patience, then it’s time to re-examine whether what you thought you heard really came from God.
#5 A message from God will stand the test of time. In most cases, they won’t be terribly time sensitive, so you can pray it through again tomorrow and see if you get the same thing.
#6 In addition, God has put you with other Christians, brothers and sisters in the family of God. There’s safety in community. If you’re not sure whether what you’re getting comes from God, check it out with a brother or sister with more experience in the faith. You might want to check it out with a couple of people. Many times God speaks to a group rather than to one individual.
Enjoy your conversations with God. In a typical day, I talk with God about many different things–my work, my family, my feelings. We joke around with each other sometimes. Sometimes we’re both very serious.
I talk with Him and listen to Him. I get ideas from Him when I’m writing. That doesn’t mean that God is dictating every moment of my existence. He doesn’t tell me what toothpaste to use, for example. He doesn’t steal my personality. On the contrary, He affirms my identity and often asks me what I want. My desires become part of the ingredients of the life we build together.
Keep in mind that every person is different. Just because I experience God one way doesn’t mean that you will experience Him exactly the same. You are you. God will relate to you differently than He relates to me. I tend to hear a quiet voice in my mind, but you may experience Him a whole different way. That’s fine. Enjoy the journey. There’s no better friend than God, and learning to hear His voice (or whatever your conversations with God are like) will add a whole new dimension to your life.
If this article has been helpful to you, you might want to check out some of my books (see below) and/or the coaching service below.
Your Best Next Step Christian Coaching and Mentoring via Email
What I can help you with
Over the last 50 years, I’ve discovered little known—but highly effective Christian spiritual tools to help you with challenges like these.
• Forgiving someone who is difficult to forgive
• Hearing the voice of God
• Processing a difficult experience or memory
• Overcoming stubborn sins, bad habits, life-controlling issues
• Overcoming lust, porn, and other temptations
• Resolving feelings of guilt and shame / forgiving yourself
• Resolving anger toward God
• Fixing certain types of marriage or relationship issues
• Reconnecting with God when He feels far away
• Overcoming anxiety, fear, or other negative emotions
• Making sense of the Bible
• Finding happiness when your life is a mess
I can teach you how to meet with God and walk away stronger, healthier, happier, forever transformed. The tools I use are typically not explained in Sunday morning sermons. Based on my experience, I would say that 98% of Christians are unaware that most of these tools exist. I found these tools as a result of searching (for decades) for faith-based tools that work in real life.
What I don’t do
I don’t do any type of 911 emergency crisis intervention. If you’re suicidal, the suicide hot line is 988. If you are experiencing domestic violence, call 911, or 800-799-7233. I’m not trained to do crisis intervention counseling. I am not a psychotherapist; I’m a Christian spiritual mentor. I don’t do couple’s therapy, family therapy, or any kind of therapy. My advice is meant to provide spiritual guidance within a Christian framework, and it is not a substitute for medical, psychological, legal, or other professional advice.
How it works
In order to help you, I need to gather some basic information about you. I need to understand the exact type of help you need. You provide this information online using the confidential form below. You pay the fee (explained below), and I will respond with an email. The coaching session is finished when you receive the email, but in the email I will explain how you may obtain additional coaching sessions if you desire. (No pressure, of course.)
Each coaching session comes in the form of a personalized email specifically designed for you. I do NOT do coaching calls or Zoom meetings. I do email instead. Many reasons; here’s two: (1) This way you and I don’t need to schedule a time to meet; I’m guessing your calendar is busy enough as it is without adding me to it. (2) This gives me time to ponder your situation and pray for you before I respond with the single best next step for you.
Your single best next step
While I know dozens of tools that might help you overcome the challenges you face, you don’t need dozens of tools. That’s way too much, way too overwhelming. You need to know the single best next step for you. So I keep it simple, and hyper focused on you. When you sign up for a coaching session, that’s what I will deliver: the single best next step for you.
Expect a response within a week, usually much faster. I respond on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday (excluding holidays) but NOT on Wednesday or the weekend. If something is happening in my life that might delay a response, I’ll do my best to give you a heads up as early as possible.
Confidential and personalized to you
The big stuff in our lives is usually the most personal. I get that. We all have our issues, and I certainly will honor your privacy. What you share with me remains confidential. The law may create exceptions to that; examples: If you give me reason to believe that you might harm yourself or someone else, I might be required to report that for your safety or for the safety of someone else. If you tell me you have committed a crime, I may be required to report that.
The fee is $50 per coaching session. I don’t receive a salary, so the fee is my paycheck. I am offering a special right now. For new clients only (and for a very limited time), your first session is only $5 (a 90% discount). That gives you an opportunity to check out what I have to offer almost risk free. And, sorry, I don’t offer refunds unless, for some reason, I’m unable to respond within a week.
How I learned these skills
While I did go to school to become a pastor, I did not learn most of these skills in school. Instead, I faced challenges: My wife suffered panic attacks. Our marriage was threatened. Our business failed. We went bankrupt. One of our children nearly died. A family member was the victim of a violent crime. I faced temptations I didn’t know how to overcome. I was angry with God. A loved one fell into an addiction. We were homeless. And the list goes on.
In the middle of this mess, I discovered a process for meeting with God and walking away stronger, healthier, happier, forever transformed. As I started doing this, everything started changing. No, the challenges didn’t go away, but I was a different person in those challenges. The temptations lost their power. I was at peace, deeply at peace, even when things were crazy.
Now I’m in a much better place. For example, my wife recently went through a bout with cancer. Throughout the months we battled this, I was 99.9% panic free, very calm, very much at peace. (She now appears to be cancer free.) My wife and I have been married for 44 years, and we’re happier now and more in love than ever.
All of this was a result of learning tools and techniques to bring God into the middle of our mess, and feel His powerful, peaceful presence. I can teach you these tools and techniques, but it does take time. I can’t teach them all to you in one session, but, then, I didn’t learn them all in one session either. Things that matter, things that last—take time.
What I can do along the way is point you to the best next step for you—the simple thing you can do that will help you to start getting the results you want.
Over the years, I’ve helped many people just like you find help and hope, and I’m looking forward to working with you.
If you are a new coaching client, you pay $5 here (90% discount). Returning clients, scroll down please. Thanks!
Returning clients, the fee is $50 here: