I often get asked how we can really hear from God. It is by no means an easy question to answer; after all, the theologians and philosophers are still in debate. Some say it is through the work of the Holy Spirit, while others insist that it is through the study of God’s word. We would say that both sources are essential and, indeed, the Holy Spirit communicates to us through the Bible, all of which is ‘God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness’ (2 Timothy 3:16).
To my mind, the ingredient that really opens us up to the heart of God is relationship (accessible only through Jesus Christ). When we interact with God through a certainty of relationship, we come into a wonderful realisation that the Lord wants to speak to us!
The prophet Isaiah indicates some of what it takes to hear the word of the Lord, saying in Isaiah 51:1, ‘Listen to me, you who pursue righteousness and who seek the Lord.’ I have learned over the years that it is usually far more difficult to attune myself to God when I am in the middle of busyness and chaos, yet when I listen, pursue and seek, then it is so much easier!