Voices: Real or Psychotic?
One moment, I am working with someone who is struggling to have any clear sense of the presence of God and almost no ability to discern the voice of God. Minutes later I am dealing with someone who is hearing voices, who has been continually told that the voices are not real, but simply a figment of his imagination. He feels like he is a misfit and is told he is psychotic.
So are we capable of hearing the voice of God or not? And if we are capable of hearing the voice of God, could it be that we also have the capability of interacting with demonic spirits in a way that is very real? There is one law that governs the spiritual realm. The same law that applies to the things of God also applies to everything spiritual including the demonic.
A common theme of those who struggle hearing the voice of God is a spiritual gifting in an area that is not “voice” related. The person might be a teacher (who naturally gravitates toward the thought world). He might be a servant, who sees needs and responds, but is not heavy on thoughts or voices. Incidentally, the teachers (who tend to control our idea flow), are the ones who shout the loudest that those who hear voices are psychotic. Of course they feel that way. They are the “normal” ones. Normal people don’t hear voices.
The reality is that God has created many different kinds of spiritual gifts, and every person will see life and respond to God according to his gift. The teacher will struggle to feel the presence of God because he is intellect heavy. He has to slow down his primary way of functioning and allow his sensing part to take over if he is to hear God. In a nation that continually exalts the mind, it is easier for most teachers to read the Bible and to draw their own conclusions. Becoming aware of and then following spiritual senses is difficult for a person with a teacher gifting.
A key to being able to sense the voice of God is humility. Humility in a persons’ spirit attracts the presence of God. If a person who is open to God simply takes time to be aware of what is happening at the spirit level, he will sense the presence of God and have an ability to interpret what God is doing in a way that is meaningful. That is the voice of God as it is spoken of in the Bible (Rom. 8:16).
In this nation, those who “hear voices” are repeatedly told they are psychotic. Once a person who hears voices begins to feel psychotic, there is a kind of self hatred that sets in. Self hatred does not leave room for God in the person’s spirit. The negativity invites demonic presence which breeds confusion, torment, or anger. Next comes a sense of defeat and hopelessness. Finally, there is often a lashing out at others. If a person in this condition is hearing voices, they are not likely to be good voices. For this person to truly hear the voice of God, there must be an emptying of some of the ugly stuff first. Spiritual law works. When we make room for God, He comes.
It is ironic that the person who is thought heavy has just as much trouble hearing the voice of God as the person who is voice heavy. God is spirit. He speaks spiritually. He is present spiritually. We live in a nation that largely discounts spirit. Our churches often are dominated by teachers who discount the spiritual part of a spiritual walk and exalt the mind part. Is it any wonder we struggle with confusion over hearing the voice of God?
In Galatians 5:16, Paul tells us, “I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh” (NKJV). To walk in the Spirit we have to hear His voice and respond accordingly. Romans 8:14 says, “For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God.” If we are not being led … we are not His. Yes we do need to hear the voice of God!