Those spiritual voices heard in stereo can be actively deceiving. Discerning the right channel from the wrong one can be arduous. So, what are some indicators we’re hearing from God and not the enemy?
1. Whilst the thing we hear mightn’t exist for us in peace, it will bring us peace as we obey. At times the voice of light brings us to points of repentance. The enemy tends to work the other way around — promises instant peace and all we get is torment.
2. The message is for others’ good. We cannot be hearing from the voice of light if it’s telling us to do anything that would bring another person (or people) harm. God never works that way in the civil realm. It’s the voice of darkness that’s justifying our sin.
3. It reveals opportunities at slow and ongoing growth. It’s only the enemy who’s interested in sending us on a get-rich-quick scheme or an opportunity-too-good-to-refuse. Whatever we’re good at God’s got a lifetime plan for. There are no instant miracles of spiritual achievement of the worldly standard; only the day by day process of serving the Lord and attaining gradual improvement. Miracles do occur, but these are brought about, in retrospect, entirely by God; they’re not in the slightest bit human-engineered, apart from humble obedience.
4. Findings and attributions of personal fairness. Self-condemnation and self-adulation are the keen extremes of the enemy who’s set upon taking us on a spiritual roller coaster with damaging emotional results. The voice of light is intent on honing us into the truth about ourselves — which is neither too harsh nor too admirable. It’s the fair honest truth.
Actively listening for the voice of light, and screening out the dark bells as they occasionally ring; these are the spiritual tasks of discernment. Both require skill, discipline and humility. It’s about knowing what to pay attention to and what to find immediately rejectable.
It’s hoped that we can attune our spiritual sense so much that we hear God in stereo, complete with surround sound.
© 2011 S. J. Wickham.