Bible Verses: John 10:4-5, Romans 10:17, 1 John 4:1, Proverbs 12:15, 1 Corinthians 14:33
I remember buying our first home and enjoying the air conditioning in the house when the air conditioner stopped working out of nowhere. Being a new homeowner, I had no idea what to do, so I called a local air conditioning company. It was a minimum charge of $200 to come, but it was in the heat of summer, so we agreed. One minute after he arrived, he ensured us that the problem was fixed. He held an utterly black air filter in his hand and said that the air filter had never been changed. When I grew up, I’ll be honest, I never even knew there was such a thing called an air filter. Nobody ever told me. So, of course, I had no idea they needed to be changed. I learned from this costly mistake how essential filters are.
I’ve found that to be true not just for air conditioning but also for the voice of God.
As a pastor, I can’t tell you how many conversations I’ve gotten in where someone says, “God told me….” But, sadly, that statement “God told me” has often been followed up with something that I know is simply not the voice of God.
So how do you know if it’s God’s voice? How do you know if it’s God speaking to you, or is it the enemy speaking to you, or the Bean Burrito you ate for dinner last night?
I learned three questions from Church of the Highlands to help form your “Voice of God” filter. The voice of God will always pass through these three tests. Let me repeat. It will always pass all three of these tests.
- Does the Bible agree?
God’s voice will never contradict His Word.
- Does godly counsel agree?
Every one of those words is important. Ensure that it is godly counsel. If you are discerning whether it’s God’s voice, don’t ask someone who is not a follower of Jesus. It’s shocking to me who some people ask for counsel. Finally, make sure the council agrees. Many people would call themselves “godly” that have pretty wacky beliefs that are incongruent with God’s Word.
- Do I have peace?
The Holy Spirit brings peace. The devil brings anxiety. Now, God’s voice may not always lead you to comfortable places, but He will bring His peace with you wherever you go.
If it passes all three, it very well could be from God. Still not sure? Here are some other good follow-up questions to ask:
- Will this make me more like Jesus?
- Is it consistent with how God made me?
- Does it concern my responsibility?
- Is it convicting or condemning? Hint: God’s voice is never meant to condemn.
- Is it wise? That three-word question would save so many headaches and so much stress.
Day 7 Challenge: Take a question or two you have been wondering about recently and take it through the “Voice of God” filter.
Prayer Prompt: For local missions, non-profits, and organizations seeking to make a difference in your area