“A third time the LORD called Samuel … ‘Here I am; you called me.’ Then Eli realized that the LORD was calling the boy … ‘If he calls you, say, “Speak, LORD, for your servant is listening.”‘” (1 Samuel 3:8-9)
Samuel thought someone was calling him. He thought it must be Eli, the only person nearby. Eli had said nothing but eventually realized that God Himself was calling Samuel. He told Samuel to respond to God, to confirm that he was His servant, and he was listening.
As Samuel kept listening, God’s voice became clearer to Him. Samuel became a servant who listened, who heard from God. Jesus made it clear that He desired to speak to His followers. He said He was like the watchman who “calls his own sheep by name and leads them out.” They would follow Him “because they know his voice” (John 10:3-4).
The Bible tells us that God still wants to speak with His people. He speaks in many ways. We hear from Him when we read the Bible, as we fill our minds with His thoughts. He speaks through His Spirit (John 16:13). He also can lead us through Bible Study, sermons, or devotional books.
We gain discernment and hear Him more clearly as we develop a personal relationship with Him, know Him, and spend time with Him. When we listen and are willing to wait on Him, our relationship deepens.
If you desire to hear from God, start by having “ears to hear” (Matthew 11:15). Strengthen your relationship with Him. Stay sensitive, for He may speak quietly, even like “a gentle whisper” (1 Kings 19:12).
Father, I want to hear Your voice and know You better. Speak to me. Help me be sensitive to your Spirit. In Jesus’ name, Amen.