Prayer is a spiritual discipline that most Christians are familiar with but most of us are frustrated with at times. Why don’t Christians pray more? We don’t know how. If you didn’t grow up in church, or even if you did, praying can be incredibly intimidating, especially if you grew up in a formal church where the pastor […]
Growing up in church, I went through a Bible study called Experiencing God and one part of it always stuck with me: how God speaks to us. Even as a faithful church-attending Christian, the whole idea of God speaking to me and how He would actually go about doing that was a bit vague and nebulous.
In his Bible study Experiencing God, Henry Blackaby listed four ways that God speaks to us, and I’ve seen no reason to change those ways over the past two decades. Here are four primary ways that God speaks to us through the Holy Spirit:
1. Bible. This is a natural place to look for God’s will, because God’s written revelation is contained within the Bible. The more you consume the Word, the more you’ll get to know the mind of God. The Holy Spirit will take the words of Scripture and make them come alive in you through conviction and application. God speaks to you through the Word.
2. Prayer. Prayer isn’t designed to simply be a monologue where you give God your Christmas wish list of all the nice things you want Him to do for you. Prayer is a dialogue, and as you develop your prayer life and cultivate the discipline of stillness and listening, you’ll sense the Holy Spirit impress words and answers to your prayers while you’re still praying. The Spirit speaks to you through prayer.
3. Circumstances. Sometimes God literally slams doors in our faces, and sometimes he opens them wide enough where it’s obvious that His hand is at work. A Christian employer in town had been searching and interviewing people for a key position in their organization for two months to no avail. This employer spent the evening in tears and prayer, asking God to send the right person. Literally the next day, the perfect fit walked in and submitted her resume. This applicant had also been searching for the right employment for months. God used the circumstances to speak clearly to both sides as an answer to their prayers.
4. Other Christians. Many times God speaks to us through the church. Proverbs speaks to us time and time again about the need for wisdom and wise counsel. God has strategically placed other Christians in your life, and many times God will use them to speak truth and direction to you. Lean into those relationships and allow them to guide you in the right direction!