Very early in my prophetic walk, I had several incredible encounters with the audible voice of God. Other than a smattering of Scripture references to this voice, it had never entered my mind that such encounters still happened. Primarily, I had these experiences while I was asleep. Somewhere between dreams, I would find myself pulled into a completely dark place. While my body was asleep, my inner man was suddenly wide awake. In the majority of these encounters, the only sense that was engaged was my spiritual hearing.
I remember that the first encounter began with the loud gong of bells sounding at various pitches. The vibrations rang through my being and felt like waves of a tuning fork. The sound, along with the darkness captured my attention and called me to be alert.
Then suddenly, God spoke. The sound felt as if it would rip my very being apart with its sheer force! Yet somehow, He spoke and I lived. His voice was slightly garbled. In retrospect, I believe this was symbolic of the fact that God was working to clear up my perception or reception of His voice.
While I don’t recall all the words in this encounter, I remember that it was a dark saying that had to do with His voice. As with most of these encounters, it was as if the meaning would bypass my mind and go straight into my spirit man. I do remember, however, that the encounter ended with a very clear call—a call for me to go forth and speak of the “sound” of His voice. It was a call to testify to what I had heard.
I have had several encounters with this audible voice in my walk with God. All are in this place in the Spirit where the sounds seem to resonate throughout my being and where what I hear is a mystery. I will also hear music and songs at times. It’s taken me many years to even find the words to write about this, and I’m just beginning to see the purpose in these encounters.
For me, being attuned to the sound of heaven and to the voice of God has been an essential part of flowing in the gift of prophecy. I believe those early encounters were very similar to the prophet Samuel’s experience, where the voice of God called to him in the tabernacle (1 Samuel 3). Before Samuel could begin his training as a prophet, he had to become aware that God was even speaking to him. Samuel had to become attuned to the voice of the Divine. Once the high priest, Eli, helped Samuel to recognize the One who was rousing him from his slumber, Samuel was able to position himself to become the servant of that Voice.
In our daily lives, there are so many voices, sounds, or frequencies that are vying for our attention. Yet when the voice of our Creator calls from within, it should truly command all of our attention. My encounters with the audible voice of God roused me from a state of spiritual slumber and into a posture of listening. I often struggled to embrace the calling on my life, and these encounters often made it impossible for me to ignore it! While I have never heard that voice while I’m awake, it doesn’t change the fact that I’m now attuned to its vibrations as it resonates throughout my daily life. The Holy Spirit carefully cultivated a heart attitude within me so that I would respond, “Speak, Lord, for your servant is listening!”
1 Samuel 3:9-10 (VOICE) Eli (realizing the Lord was calling Samuel): Go back and lie down, my son. If the voice calls you again, I want you to say, “Speak, Eternal One. Your servant is listening.” So Samuel went to his bed in his place and listened. Then the Eternal One came into his presence as before.
Eternal One: Samuel! Samuel!
Samuel: Speak, Eternal One. Your servant is listening.