How Can I Distinguish the Voice of Jesus?
By Carolyn Dale Newell
“And when he brings out his own sheep, he goes before them; and the sheep follow him, for they know His voice.” John 10:4 NKJV
Sighted people recognize faces. Visually impaired folks like myself, identify people by their voices. Unless someone has an extremely distinct tone, I won’t pinpoint it until I become familiar with their voice.
I am not afraid to ask, “Who am I talking to?” That question helps me connect voices with names, but it is not the question we want to ask the Lord.
Jesus tells us in the tenth chapter of John’s gospel that we, His sheep, know His voice.
I remember my years as a younger Christian unsure of the voice of God. I put out many fleeces, like Gideon (Judges 6:37-40). I wasn’t familiar with His voice. Sadly, some Christians go through their entire lives without the assurance of distinguishing the voice of the Lord.
But Jesus says we will know His voice and not the voice of a stranger (John 10:5). When Christians seek God’s direction, we must know the difference between the voice of Jesus and the voice of the enemy.
Perhaps, you are nodding in agreement. You know His voice. You commune daily. Great! Praise Him for that blessing, but what about someone who doesn’t know?
We realize it is the Lord when we become accustomed to hearing that still small whisper. It usually isn’t audible, but one that stirs your spirit in the depths of your soul. That can only be accomplished through time with Jesus Christ. If we don’t linger in prayer, or it is a hurried ritual, rather than a relationship, we won’t discern His unforgettable voice.
Ask for confirmations. Lord, I believe You have spoken. This is what You are saying, but I want to be assured that my ears heard correctly. I want to know it is You. No harm comes from a confirmation. Actually, it will help us distinguish the voice of God.
We rely on God for guidance about life. How can He guide us if we fail to recall His voice?
Pray more. Pray often. Pray longer. Become intimately familiar with the sweetest voice you will ever hear.
How would you describe learning to distinguish when the Lord is speaking to a new believer?
Lord Jesus, I praise You for continuing to speak even when I am unsure, asking for confirmations or putting out fleeces. Yours is the most beautiful voice I hear. … In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
© 2019 by Carolyn Dale Newell. All rights reserved.
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Originally published Wednesday, 10 August 2022.