It might surprise you, but prophecy is for all believers. Paul encourages us to desire the spiritual gift of prophecy, which is entirely different from the office of the prophet. God continues to speak today, and He wants to use you to strengthen, encourage and comfort others (1 Cor. 14:1–3).
This is God's doing, not ours. He created us to be a prophetic people, and the Word says it's for all flesh (Joel 2:28).
Prophecy scares some people, but it doesn't have to. When we give ourselves to hearing God's voice and humbly and obediently speak what He says in His timing, the whole body is built up.
When God created the world, He spoke it into being. And all throughout Scripture, from Genesis to Revelation, God speaks to people in different ways. Sometimes it's through a quiet whisper, or other times a voice like rushing waters, or even through the mouth of a donkey. But the Bible is clear—our God speaks, continually, and He's still speaking today!
Maybe you're someone who wants to hear God's voice, but you don't know how. Perhaps you've even tried, and feel like He didn't answer you. Maybe you want to listen but can't focus long enough to hear. Or maybe you're frustrated, because it seems like God is talking to everyone but you.
If you think God doesn't want to speak to you, be encouraged: Jesus says in John 10:27 that "My sheep hear My voice and I know them, and they follow me."
Sometimes the simple things can be the most difficult.
The Bible is a book filled with songs and prayers to God, and messages and promises from Him. All Scripture is inspired by the Holy Spirit (2 Tim. 3:16). God's Word is alive, sharper than a two-edged sword (Heb. 4:12), and it wants to come alive in you!
The Bible is the only sure door to learning to hear God's voice. Scripture is meant to introduce us to a Man, Jesus—the One who loves us, guides us, and has promised to speak to us.
God doesn't want to only answer our questions—although those are important; He wants to have a deep, personal relationship with us. Bible study, prayer, and hearing God's voice are all about "encountering the man hidden between the lines," says Kirk Bennett, a senior leader at the International House of Prayer.
"People aren't discipled in prayer," Kirk said in a recent interview. "Everybody's told to pray, but almost no one's told how to pray."
As we interact with Jesus through prayer, singing and Scripture study, the Holy Spirit writes truth on our hearts. This is how God shows us His character and gives us wisdom to apply to our everyday lives—including questions about school, work and relationships. We will hear His voice and sense His direction by encountering Him in His Word.
A deep knowledge of the Word and sensitivity to the Spirit will give us wisdom to prophesy as He directs. The Lord may bring a particular verse to mind while praying over a friend's situation or listening to their struggles. When we speak that word, it brings breakthrough—and joy!
Sometimes the Lord gives messages for coworkers or strangers to help start an evangelistic conversation. Sometimes it's a word of knowledge related to healing. The possibilities are almost endless.
The Lord is completely willing to talk to His people and use them to speak His words to others. All it takes is a teachable heart, a mustard seed of faith and a willingness to step out. Training in prophecy can also help.
What steps can you take to grow in the prophetic?
One way to grow in the prophetic is to learn from experienced believers. At Immerse, April 1–8 in Kansas City, leaders from IHOPKC will offer hands-on training in the prophetic. Topics include prophecy in singing, preaching and evangelism, as well as some of the common pitfalls (and how to avoid them).
Learn more about Immerse, an 8-day program for believers of all ages to grow in prayer, receive biblical teaching, attend services and build lasting friendships. Learn more about Immerse Â»
A Detroit native who was raised in Vermont and Connecticut, Adam Wittenberg worked as a newspaper journalist until 2012, when he moved to Kansas City to complete the Intro to IHOPKC internship. Afterwards, he earned a four-year certificate in House of Prayer Leadership from IHOPU and is now on full-time staff in the Marketing Department at IHOPKC. Adam is also active in evangelism and has a vision to reach people everywhere with the good news of Jesus Christ.
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