When I left for Nicaragua, I was sincerely doubting my ability to hear the voice of God. After running headlong into a huge question about how God spoke one thing to me but something completely different to someone else that affected my heart directly, I wasn't even sure my relationship with God was real and that what I'd heard was real at all. When I arrived in Managua, all I could feel was numbness and thinking "What am I doing here if I can't even hear God clearly anymore?"
When I landed in Washington D.C., I knew that I had heard God clearly over the week, in exactly the same way I had in the previous months and I wasn't wrong about what God had spoken. Because If I hadn't heard God clearly through this thing, then I have never heard God ever - as His voice has always been the same.
I know there've been times when I have projected my will onto God and claimed it was "his voice" and it wasn't. I know there've been times when I sat under a cloud of silence, wondering. But when I'm certain I hear God's voice, I have learned in the last 2 decades to heed it. The Gospel of John says that the sheep know the voice of their Shepherd.
Yesterday, I had an encounter where I heard clearly my Shepherd speaking - extremely insistently actually - about contacting someone I really wasn't sure would be a good idea. But I did. What happened over that conversation was God alone moving. But truthfully, the fact that I got to hear God's voice, and was reminded that I know the voice of my Shepherd and not to lose faith in what He speaks so clearly to my heart.
Discouragement can be so easy when you know You've heard from God and everything (and often even people) say differently. Deep in the recesses of my heart, I just have to take God at his word, His Shepherd voice to me. To be still and know what I've heard and let it be.
I'm thankful I listened to that prompting yesterday and I am certain I'm not the only one who is. But the truth is, I've become so tuned to hear Him that when I hear that clearly and insistently, I don't fail to heed him. I've witnessed the consequences in the past.
All in all, God spoke to my heart and I got to hear Him. What a tremendous gift! I cannot tell you how spectacular it is to know God lets me hear Him.