If these odd things happen to you, oftentimes it’s a sign you’ve truly heard the voice of God.
1. If You Get an Internal Warning that Proves to Be True Through External Evidence, This Is a Clear Sign You’ve Heard the Voice of God
Have you ever met someone for the first time and just got a really bad feeling? Sometimes we are wrong and this person turns out to be a true brother or sister in Christ. But at other points, your feeling about this person was correct. How will you know which one is happening to you when you get a bad feeling about someone?
The only true way to know for certain if an internal warning was actually from God is to wait and see if it is confirmed through external evidence (Deuteronomy 18:21-22). Therefore, the wise thing to do when you feel you’ve been warned about something is to proceed cautiously. Allow God the opportunities to correct you if you misheard him (James 4:6). But also don’t totally miscount what you’ve sensed, especially if this is not a normal occurrence for you.
If you feel a warning about almost everything all the time, this is probably just your own mind struggling with fears. But if you don’t normally get those senses and then, oddly, you do experience an internal warning about something, this could be the voice of God.
2. If You Get an Internal Positive Word that Proves to Be True Though External Evidence, This Is a Clear Sign You’ve Heard the Voice of God
The same principles we just discussed about receiving warnings from God is also true about receiving positive “words” from God. When I’m using this phrase “receiving a word from God,” I’m certainly not saying this type of “word” is equivalent to “the word of God.” Unlike the Scriptures, your “word from God” could be untrue or simply misinterpreted by you.
With that said, I do believe the Holy Spirit will often give us “a word” about a situation that is meant to lead us down the right path. But again, you want to proceed cautiously (Proverbs 19:2). If you feel like you got a positive word about a situation or about a person, allow God the time to correct you if you were wrong. Allow God to give you added confirmation through external evidence and through applying biblical principles.
Over time, if this internal word from God proves to be true through it actually occurring (Deuteronomy 18:21-22), though this experience can seem strange at first, you will see that this truly was from the Lord.
3. If Someone Supplies a Need of Yours or Gives You a Word that Helps You with a Problem You Never Told Anyone About, This Is Often the Voice of God Speaking to You Through This Person
Never try to use other people as your mediator between you and God. You don’t need anyone to do that for you since Jesus has already done that for you (1 Timothy 2:5). One of the promises in the New Covenant is that God himself will teach us what he wants us to know (Jeremiah 31:33-34).
With that said, we don’t want to forsake one of the main means of grace God has given to us – his church. God often chooses to bless his people through his people (Romans 12:6, 1 Peter 4:10). As James 1:17 states:
Do not be deceived, my beloved brothers. Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.”
So even if something good comes to you through another person, you can be confident that this was actually given to you by God through this person (Colossians 3:16-17).
God wants us to tell others about needs so they can help us and so we can help others (Galatians 6:1-5, James 6:13-18). However, oddly, sometimes God can use people to help us with something we didn’t even tell them about (Acts 9:10-19).
4. If You’ve Taken All the Wise Steps But the Results You Should Be Getting Are Not Happening, Oftentimes This Is God Speaking to You
God wants his people to be wise. Just read the book of Proverbs and you will be quickly convinced about this. Over and over again throughout the Bible, we are taught that if we do wise action A, B will usually (not always) happen.
It’s important, however, to remember the truth we talked about in James 1:17: that everything good is ultimately from the Lord. This is why you can sometimes take the “right actions” and not get the “right outcome” you were trying to get. It’s helpful to remember that Proverbs is actually a book of principles, not promises. When you take wise action A, you usually get outcome B. But not always.
Sometimes you can work hard and not get the promotion. Sometime you can pursue the woman in a godly way and she will still not like you. Sometimes you can avoid having sex before marriage, pray for a godly spouse, and still be single for longer than you wanted.
When you are taking wise steps but not getting the results you wanted, take a step back and ask the Lord about this. He could be trying to say something to you through these odd circumstances of doing the right thing but not getting the normal results that often happen when those actions are taken.
Here’s a playlist of videos about interpreting signs from God: What Does the Bible Say About Signs from God?
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