I recently had someone reach out to me to tell me that he has been praying for me and my family because he felt like God had put us on his heart. He even asked if everything was alright with us as he assumed that God put this on his heart for a reason.
Oddly enough I had hurt my back pretty severely around that time. The injury had kept me from carrying out normal life. It was nothing too serious or even traumatic, but I am absolutely sure his prayers have helped us. I should reiterate that we are doing great and have a perfectly fine life, but the limited activity and not being able to lift anything over 10 pounds was inconvenient. I am looking forward to getting back to 100% very soon, which seems to be the way I am progressing.
I am moved by this person’s courage both to reach out and to trust in God’s participation in his prayer life. There is a great temptation to shrug off such an inspiration, deeming it a random thought instead of a message from God. However, God does move in people’s hearts in this way and I myself have heard more and more from others who are experiencing it and responding accordingly.
For example, when I started Zenith, I heard very distinctly from God that I should quit my job and “start a healing ministry”. I then prayed about it for a couple years only to receive more callings from God and confirmations from him that I should indeed carry this plan out. In fact, He used the events of society that were already in motion to make it clear to me.
I was talking with God about this idea of a healing ministry, inquiring in particular about finances when He told me, “I will put money in your bank account”. I had assumed that maybe I would get a new job, or maybe get a big deal at work, however, God helped me understand that the money was going to materialize into my account. This was confusing to me, but I continued to go to God staying close to Him and listening to Him.
Now this was in early 2020, when the pandemic was just starting, but I had still never even heard of a stimulus check. Never in my life did I even think that the gov’t could simply put money in my bank account. Honestly, I did not know that was even possible, however, about two weeks after God told me that He would materialize money into my bank account, the news started talking about how money would soon be able to materialize into my bank account through these stimulus checks.
I was amazed. I would go on to start Zenith a couple months later and God has affirmed many more times that this is indeed what He wanted me to do. Furthermore, He has continued to guide me in my family life, my personal life, and in my relationship with Him.
Furthermore, I have witnessed God moving and speaking with those participating in our Zenith Mentorship program in pretty incredible ways. With those I minister, God will bring up past events that are in need of healing, sometimes seemingly out of the blue. Other times, I have watched God encourage people with the truths of their identity with affirming statements such as, “You are loved”, “You have tremendous value”, and “You do not need to earn the love of others”. All of these truths were incredibly important for those who received them as they assuaged the wounds of that person.
Outside of Zenith, I am often amazed by how many other people I encounter who talk about how God speaks to them. Whether they hear God tell them something specifically like He did for me or they have a solid understanding accompanied by peace, it is clear to me that God is speaking to people to help them in their lives.
Maybe you yourself have already had similar experiences in your life. Have you felt certain nudges inspiring you to do something? Or maybe you have suddenly found yourself with an understanding of something without knowing how you understand it? Even if you have not had such experiences, the good news is God is talking to you each day and his message for you is important.
Your job then is to determine what God is telling you. But how can you do this? I have a few things to keep in mind in your journey of discovering what God is telling you.
1. Learn what God sounds like. You do this by walking with God. If you want to hear His voice, you need to know His voice. You can do this with each of the items on this list. I will also add that you should immerse yourself in the Word of God written down on the pages of the Bible. This is a tremendous resource for Christians to know for certain how God speaks and what kind of things He says. If what you hear sounds a lot like how God speaks in the Bible, then you are doing pretty well.
2. Listen. Give God time each day to speak to you. This should be a time when you are not distracted from the other noises of life. Ask Him what He wants to tell you and let Him have His time where you are quietly listening. Then think about what is going on in your mind and heart during this time to determine what He is saying.
3. Pay attention. St. Therese of Lisieux once made a comment that God often spoke to her when she was not sitting quietly in prayer, but moving about in her daily activities of life. This happens quite often for all of us, so we must be ready to receive at all times from God. This means that we must pay attention to God even at the grocery store, at work or school, when driving, and more. Furthermore, God will choose seemingly random events and people to speak through to you, which I will explain more in the next point, so be ready.
4. Look deeper. Life is much more deep than our hedonistic society that overly emphasizes sense experience would say. Yes, sometimes you just stub your toe and you need to remember to watch where you are going, but on the other hand, sometimes God is speaking to you through this experience. It is up to you to discern your life and what your experiences can teach you. Honestly, God has spoken to me through other people, experiencing similar events many times throughout the week, and even through a random Hollywood movie. It happens so much that I have come to expect God to speak more than stay silent.
5. Test everything. With all of these points in mind, it is very important that you make sure that you are correctly hearing from God and interpreting what He tells you. It might seem like an impossible task, but just like learning any new skill, it gets easier and better as you go on. To test what you are hearing you can a, check with God by asking Him if it was Him who spoke and if your interpretation is correct, b, talk to someone you trust about what you are thinking God is telling you, or c, ask God to clarify or affirm what you think He is saying with another message or experience. This last point is called, “putting a fleece before the Lord”, and is done in imitation of Gideon in Judges 6:33-40. I personally have done this through praying novenas and God has led me tremendously through this method. He even led me to start this ministry.