How do we know if the voice we think we hear is that of the Holy Spirit?
This took time for me and even though I know God does speak to us through the Holy Spirit, I was terrified the first time I heard His voice that I started rebuking the voice. I will never forget that firm voice telling to stop rebuking the voice of God. I froze in my prayers waiting to see what He would to me and when nothing happened, I was a mess. I repented over and over and over again and it took me a while to believe God had forgiven me. Then, I yearned to hear Him more and more. I listened cautiously the first few times then boldly became attentive and conversed with Him. I would cease all I’m doing and just listen. I learned to pay attention to the peace and power that always surrounded me and Him using scriptures in our dialogue confirms it is Him I am listening to. Psalm 40:1″I waited patiently for the Lord; and He inclined to me, and heard my cry. This is one of the scriptures that encouraged me to listen and learn to hear Him. If He can hear me, then surely I can hear Him too. Right?
There were times in my walk, when I was still a baby Christian and new to hearing His voice where the enemy would try to fool me. I’m eternally thankful for my gut instincts. The hairs on my neck stood and something would seem really off and every time I said the name of Jesus, the voice would go quiet. I was scared in the beginning but started binding and rebuking. I also asked the Lord to let me know it’s Him speaking to me so I wasn’t led astray by the enemy. Now, I’m familiar enough with Him that I feel Him before He even speaks. His presence is power. It’s so pure, holy and divine; very unmistakable
If someone asked me how I know if the voice I hear is that of the Holy Spirit, I would direct them to the word of God. One has to have repented and accepted Jesus as Lord and Savior. One has also has to believe that the Bible is God breathed; it is the inspired word of God and it is inerrant. One has to be willing, surrendered and submitted to God to hear from Him. I’ve always heard some say, God always speaks to us but we sometimes miss it because the outside voice is louder than the inside voice. There is so much chaos in our lives that we focus on that more than we focus on God hence we miss hearing Him speak. Also, if that voice that is speaking does not align with the word of God, well then, there is a problem. God is a God of His word. He is all rounded and does not change His mind and is faithful in all His doings.
With me, the atmosphere always changes. I feel a powerful presence descend upon me and it’s like every sense in my body is attuned to this power and my heart is steady. I hear Him call my name and that has a distinct sound. The way He addresses me with authority yet gentle and with such tenderness I could sit with Him for hours on end. When I’m having a conversation with Him that is not prayer; like when I’m sitting at the office and I say ‘Father’ or when I’m driving and I just start telling Him about my day like I would a spouse or a close friend; there is a caring gentleness in His voice, a love that can’t be faked, a presence that is so powerful that the enemy cannot duplicate. Maybe it’s just me, I have grown to recognize His voice, to feel Him even before He speaks. I always smile or chuckle and I catch myself a lot before I start talking because sometimes I’m at work or in a public place.
The more time we spend with Him, the more we become familiar with Him. Sometimes I just sit without saying anything and wait. This takes discipline as He shows up on His schedule. When you diligently seek Him, He will reward you (Hebrews 11:6). Linger in His presence, don’t rush your prayers, stop and listen when He speaks. In other words, give Him all your attention. He will never disappoint!