Listening Prayer (because You can Hear God Through His Thoughts

In this post, we’ll see how God shares His thoughts with you.

When you talk to God, do you ever feel like He’s not getting through to you?

When I was a young Christian I heard other Christians say God talked to them. I thought, what do they mean – does He talk to them audibly

If He’s talking to you will you know it when it happens?

In this post, I’ll show how God shares His thoughts with you.

  • by tuning in with God
  • by thinking God’s thoughts
  • by Knowing how you can tell if it’s God’s thoughts

Tuning with God

Did you ever talk to a friend and notice they’ve tuned you out? Glazed over eyes are a dead give away they’ve stopped listening. It’s like they’ve lost connection or like a dropped telephone call. You’re talking but your thoughts aren’t reaching they’re brain.  Many times God is speaking but we’ve tuned Him out – we’ve lost connection.

Don’t beat yourself up and don’t feel guilty because you’re not hearing God’s thoughts. His thoughts are coming through and knowing how to tune in to God’s thoughts is key.

“But he who unites himself with the Lord is one with Him in spirit.” (I Corinthians 6:17)

Tuning in to God’s thoughts is one of the most common ways he communicates with you. You are joined Spirit to spirit with Him and He lets you in on what He’s thinking. God is relational and wants to talk with you. 

Conversational Prayer is hearing what’s on God’s mind. For two years I prayed for my husband Dick. I asked God to save him so he’d stop embarrassing the family. I said God change him. Nothing changed. Nano, zilch, nothing!

Dick got worse and I got more frustrated with God. I mean, I was talking to God but why didn’t He answer my prayer?

But one day this thought went through my mind, ask me to save Dick for my honor and glory. I thought, what a great idea, I never thought of that. Where do you think that thought came from?

I wanted Dick to stop embarrassing the family but God wanted a preacher. I repented (changed the way I was praying). God gave me advance information on how to pray for my husband and He answered my prayer.

I prayed two weeks after I received the advance information and Dick had a Damascus road experience with Jesus that forever changed his life. And a year later God called him into full-time ministry. Today is 2019 and Dick is still going strong.

On a side note. Intercession is praying for others and I thought I was doing that when I first started praying for my husband. I didn’t know then what I know today about praying for others.

When the Holy Spirit burdens you to pray about something on the Father’s heart, you find yourself coming into agreement with God’s intention for that person. Once I repented of my selfish way of praying for Dick  – that’s when God’s thoughts came into my mind. 

When the Holy Spirit burdens an individual to pray about something that is on God’s heart, you can be sure God will answer that prayer. For New Testament believers, intercession is a normal supernatural reality.

God’s purpose is for us to abide in Him, even as he abides in us.

“The anointing which you have received from Him abides in you, and you do not need that anyone teach you; but as the same anointing teaches you concerning all things, and is true, and not a lie, and just as it has taught you, you will abide in Him.” (I John 2:27)

God doesn’t want you groping in dark He wants you to hear His voice. Conversational Prayer is like breathing –  you’re not always thinking about breathing, but you are always doing it, aren’t you?

You are special.  As your awareness grows of Him in you and you in Him by the Holy Spirit—always in His presence, and filled with joy, you begin to see how special you are.  It’s just a part of Conversational Prayer. You are one of those special people

(We) are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people. (I Peter 2:9a)

If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. (II Corinthians 5:17a)

You’re a new creation, special to God and privileged with the potential to hear God’s voice for yourself. 

Conversational Prayer is hearing what’s on God’s mind.

God shared His thoughts with me about Dick and I was obedient and smart enough to act on His information. Actually, He even told me what to ask for.  

Before that, I groped in the dark because I didn’t have God’s mind about how to pray for Dick. I prayed soulish prayers but God had something else in mind. Once I had His thoughts, I was confident and knew God would answer my prayer.  

I use to think God could only speak to me during my morning devotions but if Conversational Prayer is hearing what’s on God’s mind, He can speak any time and anywhere. 

You don’t need to be connected to a special person, a special time, or a special place! When God downloaded His thoughts to me, I was standing at the kitchen sink,  washing dirty dishes – it blew my mind.

I wasn’t sitting in my prayer closet begging God to save Dick for His honor and glory. I was at the sink washing dishes when the thought, ask me to save Dick for my honor and glory, went through my mind.

God’s thoughts didn’t come from my pastor; it didn’t come during my devotions, and I wasn’t in the church building.

Thinking God’s thoughts

Hearing God’s thoughts is one of the most common ways the Holy Spirit speaks to us. God can download His thoughts into your daily life anytime He wants to because you have the mind of Christ.

“But the natural, nonspiritual man does not accept or welcome or admit into his heart the gifts and teachings and revelations of the Spirit of God, for they are folly (meaningless nonsense) to him; and he is incapable of knowing them [of progressively recognizing, understanding, and becoming better acquainted with them] because they are spiritually discerned and estimated and appreciated.

But the spiritual man tries all things [he examines, investigates, inquires into, questions, and discerns all things], yet is himself to be put on trial and judged by no one [he can read the meaning of everything, but no one can properly discern or appraise or get an insight into him].

For who has known or understood the mind (the counsels and purposes) of the Lord so as to guide and instruct Him and give Him knowledge? But we have the mind of Christ (the Messiah) and do hold the thoughts (feelings and purposes) of His heart.”
(I Corinthians 2:14-16 Amplified Bible) 

One reason some Christians don’t hear God’s thoughts is they’re not spiritual – they’re nonspiritual. The nonspiritual man doesn’t know he can receive God’s thoughts any time day or night. He knows he’s going to heaven when he dies but in the meantime, he’s hearing impaired.

Has someone ever come to your mind you hadn’t thought about in a long time? But today for some reason, you can’t stop thinking about them, and you find out that they are in the hospital. You heard what was on God’s mind for this person. They needed prayer and God tapped you on the shoulder so to speak and gave you the gift of the word of knowledge. It came in the form of thoughts.

My marriage is a good example of hearing God’s thoughts. Dick may start out talking about an issue and a thought goes through my mind. I talk to him about the thought I just had and we come to realize our thoughts are synchronized with God’s thoughts.

I believe hearing what’s on God’s mind is more common than we realize. We need to know this is one way the Holy Spirit communicates with us and it comes so naturally, we miss it.

Is it God’s thoughts?

A strong warning is in order here. Not all thoughts that come into your mind are from God. A good idea may be good but is it God’s idea? I’m learning that God’s thoughts are smarter and wiser than me.

A thought from God is not part of your thinking process. Remember how I started out praying for Dick? God save Dick so he won’t embarrass the family any longer. That was my human thought coming out of my human reasoning. But when God downloads His thoughts into your mind they have nothing to do with your thoughts.

You may see someone in a store who reminds you of a friend. That’s normal and part of the human thinking process. But when God speaks He can download His thoughts while you’re washing the dishes or mowing the grass. One minute your focus is on washing the dirty dishes the next thing you know God downloads a thought in your mind.

The devil, on the other hand, can work through our human thoughts too. His thoughts bring confusion, unrest, worry, and anxiety. He will rob you of your peace if he can so we need to draw our strength and might from God.

The devils’ thoughts come as reasonings, speculations, and imaginations. I had reasoned within myself that my life would be better if only Dick would change.  Do you see the lie in thinking this way? I imagined I didn’t have to change because it was Dick who had the problem. 

Every one of us has been tormented by the devils’ thoughts at one time or another. Yet it was God who designed our bodies with the ability to hear what’s on His mind. Awesome isn’t it?

Finally, Jesus is the pattern Son because He shows us what it means to hear what’s on God’s mind. 

“I can do nothing ·alone [by myself; on my own initiative]. I judge ·only the way I am told [as I hear], so my judgment is ·fair [just; right; righteous]. I don’t ·try to please myself [seek my own will/desire], but ·I try to please [the will of]the One who sent me.” (John 5:30 The Expanded Bible)

I love how the Expanded translation captures what listening prayer is. Jesus lived His life knowing the Father’s thoughts and so can you.

 

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