Saturday, October 15, 2011


The Lord GOD has given Me the tongue of disciples,
That I may know how to sustain the weary one with a word.
He awakens Me morning by morning,
He awakens My ear to listen as a disciple.
Isaiah 50:4

Nothing will enhance the effectiveness of your ministry more than listening to God. Why? Because when you listen to God it opens up a whole new dimension of possibilities. You are finite and limited in insight. God is infinite and knows all things.

We restrict the possibilities of what could happen when we disciple others and exclude listening prayer. “Exceedingly Abundantly” is God’s middle name!  The attributes of our Triune God qualify Him as the ultimate resource for a deep and profound discipleship. He’s Omniscient, so He knows absolutely everything about us. He’s omnipresent, so He’s been present to everything that’s ever happened to the one your seeking to help. As if that’s not enough, God is also omnipotent – He has the power to transform the one we’re helping from the inside out.

What about listening to God with the person you are discipling? This approach will prove even better than listening about what to say to your friend. Why? It’s one thing to have a word from God to share with a friend. It’s even better if you can help the friend hear directly from the Source of life and godliness! (2 Peter 1:3). Listening with others is superior to listening for others in the same way that teaching someone to fish is better than catching a fish and sharing it with them.

A word of warning: there’s often an awkward learning curve in transitioning to listening to God with people. When we talk to the people we minister to, there’s an underlying sensation of being in control. When we seek to listen to God with someone, guess what? We no longer control the agenda. There’ll be awkward moments of silence. There’s no guarantee the person we’re meeting with will hear what we hope he’ll /she’ll hear. How do we handle silence when we’re with another person?

Take a look at this storyboard about listening to God with others. It highlights one of the first times I listened to God with a friend and this approach actually “worked” (i.e. it’s a true story). After watching the presentation, take the time to answer the questions that follow.

Questions for Growth and Dialogue

1.     What are your thoughts about listening to God with the people you’re seeking to help in their spiritual growth?
2.     What successes have you had listening with others?
3.     What obstacles have you run in to?
4.     What questions to you have about listening prayer, listening on your own, or listening with others?

If you can’t figure out how to post your experiences or questions on this blog, please send them to If you’d prefer to remain anonymous, let me know and I’ll keep your identity a secret. Let’s dialogue!


  1. When I think about my vision for the future, this is so much of what I see. Having been in groups where God has ministered so powerfully, I can see this is where it is at. Last weekend I was with a group of people listening to hear from God and every one of us left strengthened, encouraged and guided by various words received from God. My husband who had never been involved in a group like this and has been going through a difficult time, came away from the time saying "That was really fun!" We both agree that the fact that God would take the time to speak to us through His Spirit and the Body of Christ gives us joy and hope. It is SOO powerful!

  2. It's wonderful that you have the opportunity to listen to God in community with your husband. This is what God had in mind for the N.T. church. Keep leaning in and listening.