This blog is an adaptation of one I wrote almost six months ago. So often our prayers are packed with one-way communication. We speak and expect God to listen, but what if he wants to speak and expects us to listen? The listening prayer pdf that’s included later in this blog is not a magic formula. Please don’t expect God to audibly speak. He definitely can do that but often doesn’t.
What you can expect is to be a little uncomfortable. We live in a very loud world, and it’s what you’ve probably become accustomed to. Sitting down and quieting your soul long enough to hear the still small voice of God, as he speaks to your heart, is a commitment. But it’s so, so worth it!
Spiritual Disciplines Part 4: Listening Prayer PDF
Before we get into the process, I feel the need to be very clear with you. I’m NOT an expert on listening prayers. I’m in the learning phase just like you. It’s just that I have a little experience.
Our bookshelves in our office are stocked with some incredible books on spiritual disciplines, and at the beginning of the year, I felt compelled to make this the year of spiritual disciplines. I grabbed the Spiritual Disciplines Handbook* and made a list of the top 12 disciplines that jumped out at me. Each month, I choose a discipline from my list to focus on.
Truthfully, there have been a couple of months where I got derailed. I hate that I’m imperfect, but God’s mercies are new every morning. Because of Jesus, falling off the bandwagon doesn’t mean I’m banned from the wagon. And neither are you. Just hop back on!
Anyway, in February, my discipline was what Adele Ahlberg Calhoun calls the Prayer of Recollection. I adapted her process to create the outline and PDF for this blog. One more point I want to be clear on is that when I use the word “God,” I’m talking about the triune God of the Bible – Father, Son, and Spirit, who offers salvation through faith alone, in Jesus alone. If we get nothing else right, we need to get that right.
Why You Need This Listening Prayer PDF:
- Silence and solitude are two Christian practices that seem to have been lost to our busy and distracted society. This process will help you get comfortable with quiet.
- If you’ve ever been frustrated with prayer because it just seems like you’re always talking at God, then this will open the lines of communication.
- If you’ve ever thought meditation and listening prayers are bordering on the New Age, then first, good for you! We need to be careful with spiritual practices because so many of them are deceptive and so much of what’s out there today is ungodly and will lead us to ourselves. This prayer guide will help keep things focused on Jesus.
Listening Prayer PDF Process:
First, you’ll need to prepare yourself to be quiet and listen. The steps you’ll want to take are as follows:
- Find a quiet place – somewhere isolated.
- Grab a paper and pencil.
- Ask the Holy Spirit to speak, and tell him you’re listening.
- Set a timer for 10 minutes.
- Write down anything that comes to mind.
- One to two words per thought is fine. We’re not journaling here, just taking notes.
Next, look over your notes, and ask yourself these questions:
- Does anything stand out?
- Is there a clear instruction?
- Was I just distracted?
- Was there a revelation?
Before moving on, confirm what you see in Scripture. If you feel like God has given you instructions they won’t contradict the Bible. If you’re not sure how to do that, either reach out to a trusted Christian friend or contact us!
After evaluating your notes (and even during your evaluation) you’ll need to pray. Ask God to show you what is from him and what is from you.
Ask the Holy Spirit to show you what you should do now. He could be calling you to act, wait, confess, or trust Jesus. He could be calling you to be bold or just to rest in His goodness.
Finally, you have to act. Don’t ignore what you believe God is asking you to do. If you’re afraid or unsure, tell Him. He already knows anyway. Then, ask for his help in being obedient.
If what you wrote down in the evaluation step seemed to contradict God’s Word, then a good response is to lay it at His feet. Thank Him for exposing your heart, then ask Him to bring your thoughts and actions in line with His Word and will.
How to Get The Listening Prayer PDF
Now, for what you’ve been waiting for. Click HERE to download the Listening Prayer PDF. I formatted it so you can print it 2-sided (flipped on the long edge). If you want more of the fillable sheets, then just print multiple copies of pages 3 and 4. If you just want the instructions, then page 1 is for you!
My prayer is that God will use this to strengthen your relationship with Him.
Because there’s a better way,
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QUESTION: What’s your go-to process for hearing god speak?
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