The Still Small Voice

I was in a Gospel Doctrine class last year, as I sat quietly listening to the lesson. I tend not to say too much, seems like every time I’m about to comment the Spirit tells me, “Not today.” But this day I got the green light.

We were discussing Elijah and the story where he had gone up to a mountain and had an encounter with the Lord.

And he said, Go forth, and stand upon the mount before the Lord. And, behold, the Lord passed by, and a great and strong wind rent the mountains, and brake in pieces the rocks before the Lord; but the Lord was not in the wind: and after the wind an earthquake; but the Lord was not in the earthquake: And after the earthquake a fire; but the Lord was not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice.” 1 Kings 19:11-12

The Gospel Doctrine teacher asked the question, “How do you know if it is the Spirit talking to you?” He waited two seconds and called on the Stake Relief Society President. She shrugged her shoulders and said, “I don’t know.” The teacher talked about how the Lord speaks to us through our feelings.

I rose my hand and said, “I noticed in this verse that it says the Lord spoke to Elijah in a still small voice, not a still small feeling.” I then said, “Can the Lord not speak to us in words in our minds? Feelings can be deceptive sometimes. What do you think?”

The teacher held up his hand and said, “That is not true. The General Authorities say it is a feeling.” and then read a quote from a General Authority.

During the lesson I clearly recalled my memory of what the Lord had shown me from this moment in Elijah’s life. From my journal I had written:

He prayed to the Lord in a cave and asked God, “Where are you?” Why can the people not see you or find you as I? Elijah went out of the cave as a strong gust of wind, like a hurricane blew him harshly and he wondered why. Then there was an earthquake and he fell to his knees. Then he saw fire in the sky and smoke in the distance. It was truly powerful, he thought. Then, Elijah heard a soft voice in his mind and heart that overcame Him, and it said, “I am here Elijah, I am always here.” Elijah then understood that the most powerful communication the Lord has with us is by His Spirit through revelation. It is here that one is truly converted and seeks repentance and comes to Him.

I believe that the Lord can speak to us in our feelings, but feelings alone are difficult to know. We must listen for those clear thoughts that come by the Spirit as the Lord speaks to us.

When I pray or seek revelation I try to calm my emotions. Like ripples in a pond, or static on the radio, emotions can cloud our clarity of thought. Sometimes we have no choice but to push through the emotions that make it difficult, because we are mortal. Perhaps this is where fasting under difficult emotional duress is effective, because fasting can create a sense of calm.

“The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters. [Peace be unto you.] He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. [revelation] Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.” Psalms 23:1-4

If you are having trouble hearing the voice of the Lord, cry out to Him in your private place and then find your peace of mind. Listen as long as it takes to hear those clear thoughts. Try writing the thoughts that come to you. Be patient. He rarely comes to us in the wind, the earthquake, or the fire from the sky. He speaks to us through a “still small voice.”

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16 Responses to The Still Small Voice

  1. Ellee says:

    The Lord has spoken to me in different ways, what I think of as a still small voice where maybe one word is given to me and as I ponder on what that word might mean it blossoms into a formed thought. He has put whole sentences into my mind and I’ve even, at times, been able to have a conversation with him. More rarely he has spoken to me in an audible voice but this is more like a pronouncement, no conversation. I have found its best if I don’t try to limit the Lord. It seems to me if you are convinced that the Lord will not (can not, maybe) speak to you, you are probably right. You are limiting Him.

    I’ve also had times when I’ve gone days, or maybe more, with no communication from Him, that I recognize. I learned from you PR that I’m not usually asking anything for Him to respond to during those times. So I work on how to phrase my concerns into questions.

    Overall I have found the Lord to be merciful and generous. But hit takes work in my side to develop and maintain that relationship.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. rxcooper says:

    I believe the reason He speaks to us via a “still, small voice” is because it awakens within us a remembrance of His voice when He spoke to us premortally and when our spirits are attuned to that frequency there is no denying it because we feel it spiritually and recognize the source from which it comes.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Karla says:

    I think of Nephi when he was asked to slay Laban, he heard the Spirit, but also he felt the fear and doubts, but he had to push the feeling aside to continue with what had been asked of him. Sometimes and it’s been lately my experience that our emotions can be a distraction, like fear, sadness, but other emotions like love, joy can add to the revelation, but I agree we can’t rely on feelings alone.

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  4. scootd28 says:

    “I am always here”. I’m told the same thing. But it’s not just me, nor just Anonymous, nor just Elijah. This message is for everyone. Furthermore, I think we have modern day equivalents of the wind, fire and earthquake…voice of General Authorities or prophets, seeking a specific manifestation and calling it “the Second Comforter”, a cathartic, life-altering Baptism of Fire, a gathering of Zion, the sealed portion. When we lust after these things, and especially when we think we are somehow less in His eyes because He has not manifested Himself to us in these ways, we are subtly denying Him. We are not listening to that still, small, voice…that voice filled with love, sans judgment. We continue to think we can somehow qualify for His love, which is impossible. If we are to have the kingdom of Heaven, we must choose it. We must recognize the glory, the joy, that is our inheritance today – not based on some future wind, fire, or earthquake. [Scott, I know your heart hurts because you do not feel you have experienced such things. The word “lust” that you use to describe seeking the Lord is not the best way to describe it. We are invited to knock and seek after Him. The purpose of a baptism of fire or a Second Comforter experience is to draw closer to Him. It is about relationship and to be a servant. If we lust after these experiences our intent in not pure and it will never happen. Jesus said that the “pure in heart” will see God. Our conversion begins with the still small voice, as was communicated to Elijah. Elijah is a good example of the kind of relationship the Lord desires to have with us. The Lesson of 1 kings 19:11-12 is that no person will ever be converted by miracles and signs before they can receive a witness of the Spirit where the Lord speaks to them in their heart and mind. PR]

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  5. So sad to see these kinds of answers at church. And when Christ says we can see His face, is it just a feeling too ?
    Thanks to you Pure I came to learn how to hear His voice. Take care
    Pierrick

    Liked by 1 person

  6. J B says:

    A stumbling block for me in reading PR’s inspired books has been the bussiness of my life and familiar spirits waging war on me etc… As of today I have been using an audio app to record with my voice PR’s books. Infact, I for the first time a few hours ago recorded 40 minutes— Ha! In a fine narrators voice into my voice recording app on my phone reading PR’s “how to open your spiritual eyes” book. A goodness and calm fell over my home while I read and remained in a home of three active boys a teenage girl and our 5 year old little gal for awhile after reading aloud. These truths so mercifully given to us by our Savior Jesus Christ in this the final hour of the latter days are true pearl’s of great price aiding us like few inspired words have through the available known written words on this Earths history…

    “Awake and arise…”

    Ps
    I have really enjoyed and bennefited listening to my own audio recording. I hear and feel my convictions of these truths listening to my recordings which engages my interest and sends light of heaven more rapidly as a result…

    Alma 12:9-11

    [I am humbled that you would do this. Honestly, I feel uncomfortable. To allow this comment feels like flattery, and I don’t deserve any. Everything is to bring glory to God. However, what you are doing is an act of faith. Any time we use our creativity to draw closer to God, to seek Him – He blesses us. When I say creativity, I really mean desire dressed in virtue, which allows the Spirit of God to inspire our minds. Thank you for sharing, JB. PR]

    Liked by 3 people

  7. J B says:

    King Benjamin wanted us to see him, that is, in his own strength he is nothing but in the strength of the Lord he is everything… King Benjamin’s perspective of how he governed and viewed himself is how true empowered leaders among God’s kids should govern and want to be viewed and measured by… PR, indeed I praise and give glory to God for your instrumentality at this super pivotal time in this telestial mortal- probation- period exsistance. Thank you for always being consistent in leading / pointing the way to Christ that we too might receive as you have. I did feel inspired to encourage others in the busyness of their lives to not let the words of the lord fall to the ground as I had because of maybe similar difficulties etc. That is not to say I have not read the information you published and even a few times over at that—- I was simply pitching the action of knowing It is very helpful to let our “incomings and outgoings be in the name of the Lord” if in our idle times we have his words written on our hearts by reading and also where we can by listening! Obviously not only in our idle times but also on the go through audio via headphones / earbuds etc we can hunger and thirst after righteousness and receive and be strengthened more readily as a result. At least this is my goal and aim for me and mine. What terrific augmentation the Lords words are through you in connection with our holy standard works… 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

  8. woodberries says:

    I have been listening to a audiobook as a continued search for verification that I hear the voice of the Lord. And it’s really not giving me any clues so far. Its just about feelings. Of course I know the general feeling of the Holy Ghost. The Holy Spirit that fills my heart with peace and calm and joy.
    I think it would be easier to believe I am hearing the Spirit if the last time wasn’t kind of a weirder situation than the others and did NOT seem to have a righteous purpose other than a test whether i would do something that was really difficult for me! 1. It was something I didn’t want to do and didn’t think I’d really merited the need to apologize. 2. The person I apologized to didn’t seem bothered by it. 3. It kind of became an issue for me afterwards. But I heard the same thing several times clear, but in not head (not audible).
    What I believe to be the Holy Ghost but am not sure is when I hear words in my head. It’s hard to describe. The words are sometimes repeated later exactly the same. and at the time I’ll remember them exactly until I do the thing, but later I won’t have a clue what the *exact* words were.
    Sometimes the RESULT of my action becomes an answer to prayer in a unique way. That is more convincing of it being the Spirit, but not always.
    Like when I knew there was a more spiritual use of the Primary’s time than what they were doing for Spotlight. It was like I had ants in my pants and could NOT ignore telling the Primary president as nicely as humanly possible about this idea. I even tried to kind of smooth it over with “i’m not criticizing YOU, I know you’re brand new and just doing what you know.” I even came up with a whole list of questions that would work for it. And she just hated me for it. Later I realized it was probably the Lord speaking to me or I wouldn’t have been SO COMPELLED But I just not 100% sure. I wish I knew of more solid examples that I could compare to and say “ok. this is just like what I experience and it says it IS the Holy Ghost.” And not examples where the spirit says “move sideways” and you miss a car from hitting you.
    I guess the only time I knew for sure was not in words but the idea that I needed to try to have more children. I knew I couldn’t just leave this life not having given the Lord more chances. As soon as I stopped preventing pregnancy, an angel kind of showed himself to me, just barely into my peripheral vision and disappeared. Then after I did get pregnant, it was twin little blobs that looked like they wouldn’t grow and it seemed to me like the Spirit told me to ask on the Ward FB page to pray for them. Again. Not at all something I would normally do. I’m too private. with that one, It was awkward. In the end, I never learned of anyone doing so and the babies didn’t live. At least I know I’m obedient when it “seems like” it’s the Holy Ghost.

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  9. Learning to hear the Holy Spirit is a process. It often sounds like our own voice, but more directed and often as Nephi would describe, “constrained by the Spirit.” When I am asked to do things that are unconventional I always pause and pray to be sure.

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  10. Nate says:

    “I am here Elijah, I am always here.” Elijah then understood that the most powerful communication the Lord has with us is by His Spirit through revelation. It is here that one is truly converted and seeks repentance and comes to Him. ”

    I’ve noticed that the Spirit fills my entire being, as if it’s communing from my very center… its being filled with Light and a Knowing. Whereas the voice of other spirit’s sound like my own thoughts. Is there a difference in the experience betwee. ministering angels promating us and the Lord speaking to us?… are there times when ministering angels extend the Spirit (giving that Knowing experience) and other times they just sound like our own thoughts? (Like familiar spirits do)

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  11. The thoughts are always translated into words we understand. Rarely do we hear another person’s voice. This is why too often we confuse the ministering of angels as our own thoughts. The more virtue you surround in your mind the easier it is to tell when its the Adversary or coming through the Spirit of the Lord. The more experience you have beyond the veil the more you can discern between angels and the Lord Himself.

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  12. Nate says:

    So there are times the Spirit is intentionally more subtle? This is what makes it difficult for people to know, because it doesn’t always seem clear like a Knowing.

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  13. The Spirit is almost ALWAYS subtle. It has never been an easy thing for anyone to do. Our desire to know Christ (repentance) leads us to an understanding of His Voice. We must learn to trust and then the ability to discern increases as the gifts of the Spirit are received exponentially. Then as time goes by what would have been like an earthquake now feels like a gentle breeze as we walk and talk with God. It is always subtle to the righteous; to the wicked the Spirit it undetectable or overpowering at the higher levels.

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  14. Nate says:

    When Joseph Smith received a yes to share the Book of Mormon pages with Martin Harris (on his third attempt of asking) was that from God or a familiar spirit? [It was the Lord allowing Joseph to fail to learn an important lesson. How many of us have thought we received an answer and then failed? Why does that happen? Sometimes it is because we want something so much our emotions cloud are judgment. God could intervene and stop this, or we can learn the lesson. Jospeh Smith learned a great lesson. Not everything we do is from a familiar spirit in the asking. It could have been that a familiar spirit played with Joseph’s emotions and convinced him it was important enough to tempt the Lord, I don’t know. PR]

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  15. Nate says:

    What’s the difference between the Gift of Revelation and the Gift of Prophecy?

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  16. Revelation is to receive the word of God for yourself. Prophecy is to be commanded to share the word of God with others.

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