I had just finished speaking at a men’s event in Texas when a man approached and asked if I would pray for him. Josh was 52, stood 5’10” and wore a red racing jacket covered with patches.


Photo by Linda Tanner, CC

“I’ve made a lot of money,” he said. “In fact, I’ve made so much money I couldn’t spend it all if I tried.”

Josh said this with no more joy than a mortician would say, “I buried a lot of people this year.”

“My problem is, I don’t know what God wants me to do with the rest of my life. Should I sell my businesses or keep them? Or, should I pursue something else?”

I told Josh I’d be glad to pray for him. I then said, “Once we bow to pray you won’t hear me say anything for a little while because I’m going to wait and see if the Lord has a download for me.”

“A download?” he asked.

“Sometimes the Lord will give me a word or an image that’s important,” I answered. “At other times, I get nothing. But I like to listen for a short time to see.”

He nodded his head and we both bowed. A moment later I saw an image of a deer standing in a grassy field.

Obviously, I had no idea what possible relevance a deer standing in a field would have to Josh and his question. With his head bowed, I said, “I’ve got something, but you’ll need to decide if it’s important.”

I then told him about the deer in the grass and he immediately started crying. “I bought two pieces of property a while back,” he said as tears streamed down his cheeks. “I use them to take underprivileged kids deer hunting.”

Wow! I didn’t see that coming. But in that moment God did something special for Josh.

My skill at listening to God is one I’m developing. In many ways, I feel like a toddler learning to walk. It’s only been three years since I first heard God speak to me. At the time I was standing in the back of a church enjoying the music when two words popped into my mind. I wouldn’t have thought anything about it, except they kept repeating, like an audio loop. And so I acted on the words and a miracle occurred. Now days, the first thing I do before praying for someone is ask the Lord to quiet any false impressions from my mind or the enemy. I then pray, “Lord, if you have something that will help this person, please show me.”

If you’ve never gotten such a message, then I would encourage you to give it a try. The next time you’re about to pray for someone, ask God to protect you from false messages and to speak to you. If a word or image appears in your mind, ask the person you’re about to pray for if it means anything to them. Don’t add to what you’ve seen or heard or try to explain it. Just ask if it means anything to them. If not, go ahead and pray for them. If it means something, let them explain and then pray.

As you begin to put this into practice, you’re going to see some exciting things happen in the lives of those you pray for.

This is Part Five in a continuing series on Hearing God’s Voice.  Read Part OnePart Two, Part Three, and Part Four.

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