The voices in my head compete for my attention. They can be quite demanding and extremely vocal at the most inconvenient times, like the middle of the night, when I am busy with a new project, or when I meet new people. They are often hard to switch off and personally I would like caller ID for most of them.
All of us have voices in our heads, not necessarily audible voices, but definitely voices that tell us things. Sometimes it is like two people are having a conversation in there and you are eavesdropping. Luckily all voices fall into three main sources and figuring out which voice is speaking often helps me.
God’s voice, this is the voice of faith that we start to hear from the moment we come into a personal relationship with God. In fact, it is His voice that calls us to salvation and it is the voice of truth.
There are five reasons we don’t hear the voice of God:
We are not listening. (Psalm 46:10 “Be still and know that I am God.”)
We don’t want to hear the voice of God.
We don’t know His voice. (John 10:27 “My sheep listen to my voice, I know them and they follow me.”)
We are tuned into our own frequencies, the voices we would like to listen to. Our own preferences and prejudices.
We don’t believe He wants to speak to us.
The Bible is a written record of the voice of God. God Himself was personally involved in every word written to us, inspiring authors with His very words. 2 Tim 3:16-17 “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” When we read the word of God we become familiar with His voice and the more we do it, the more we are able to recognize His voice and discern when He is speaking to us.
There is also Satan’s voice, the voice opposite to truth, the voice of lies and deceit. John 8:44 “…he is a murderer from the beginning, not holding on to truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native tongue for he is a liar and father of lies.”
This voice always discredits or contradicts anything God’s voice is saying. Gen 3:1 “Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, ‘Did God really say, You must not eat from any tree in the garden.’?” A greater familiarity with God’s word and God’s truth enables us to recognize its opposite from Satan’s mouth. The more we read the Word of God the more we can recognize lies and half truths.
Then there is your own voice, the voice motivated by your own motives and desires. This voice is the one we don’t always recognize as NOT being the voice of God, especially when we are tuned into our own thoughts and ideas. The more we focus on ourselves and what we are about, the more we will hear this voice. If we are not saturated with the things of God and His Word, our voice will sound very much like the voice of God. The natural tendency of our own voice is toward sin and evil. Gen 6:5 “The Lord saw how great man’s wickedness on the earth had become and that every inclination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil all the time.”
It is important to regularly spend time in the Word of God so that we can differentiate between these three voices in our heads. I believe that God is always speaking to us, because He longs to be in relationship with us. Our problem is that we don’t always recognize His voice, like Samuel lying on his bed in 1 Sam 3:9-10 we have to train ourselves to hear His voice and respond to it appropriately.
Father with all the voices in my head, please help me to regularly think about which voice I am listening to. Help me to spend time in your Word so that I can more readily recognize your voice and help me to be like Samuel who says: “Speak Lord, your servant is listening.”
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