Does God Yell? On Listening.

Yesterday, I heard a prompt from the Holy Spirit. It wasn’t on a major issue but it was wise advice that had I received and heeded it, my day would have gone better.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at

Am very delighted to see Duane’s article reprinted here. I had read it on his site first and found it resonnated with what God is trying to teach me, too. Listening: truly a lost art.

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It would be helpful to know more about Enoch and his walk with God. the Psalms give us a pretty good picture of the cross section of such a ongoing conversation. David didn’t hold anything back. To my mind the chapter on Prayer in Steps to Christ is the most charming description of prayer. Paul spent three years relearning the Messianic message of the Old Testament in the context of the recent Christ event. We can’t walk with prod unless we agree. Tom Z

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very nice article, with a timely reminder, especially for those of us who are highly verbal :wink:

i confess, though, that i chuckled a bit at the notion that the holy spirit’s striking ananias and sapphira dead was somehow distinct from or preferable to a yelling effect…perhaps this incident gives new meaning to the phrase, “the strong, silent type”…

on the other hand, there may be a place for yelling from the pulpit…i can think of several dynamic black pastors who essentially yell through their entire sermons - to very good effect…i can think of a white pastor who yelled a lot, along with talking extremely fast and feverishly, which rubbed a few people the wrong way when he put on an evangelistic campaign at my church around 20 yrs ago…but the results of that effort were quite amazing, which i don’t think have been equaled since…there were many baptisms, and a few weddings, all of which have resulted in strong church families today…

This was an excellent article I particularly liked what the author, Duane Covrig, said;
“How does God get us out of our mental ruts? How does he help us learn? It is often by how well we listen – to Him, to each other, to new and even opposing ideas.” I find God speaks and sometimes needs to yell at me in these ways:

  1. Through His Word in general.
    2 Timothy 3:16 says that all Scripture is “God-breathed.” His Word sometimes gives us a warning, a word of encouragement, or a lesson for life. It’s ”His-story”–written with love as God’s guide for life, “so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.”
  2. Through His Son, Jesus Christ
    “In the past God spoke to our forefathers through the prophets at many times and in various ways, but in these last days he has spoken to us by His Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom he made the universe” Hebrews 1:1-2, NIV).
  3. Through Nature and God’s Creation
    “For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities–his eternal power and divine nature–have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse ” Romans 1:20, NIV). Through the intricate details and magnificent beauty of all that God has made, we can “hear” His voice
  4. Through Other Believers
    “The wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial, and sincere” (James 3:17, NIV).
    I’ve “heard” God speak to me numerous times through other people. A good friend once cautioned me about flirting with danger. Words from a speaker or Christian author have both challenged me and convicted me at times. God once spoke through a donkey (Numbers 22:28). Why then, can’t He speak through anyone at anytime or in any way He wants to?
  5. Through Music
    In 2 Chronicles 20, King Jehoshaphat faced a huge army of enemies who could have easily destroyed His people, but he did a strange thing. With a declaration that his eyes were on God, he sent in a choir of praise singers: “Jehoshaphat appointed men to sing to the LORD and to praise him for the splendor of his holiness as they went out at the head of the army, saying: ‘Give thanks to the LORD, for his love endures forever’” (2 Chronicles 20:21, NIV). God “spoke” clearly. He released His power, and Jehoshaphat’s army defeated their enemies!
  6. Through Circumstances
    Through Moses, God used circumstances (plagues) to convince Egypt’s leader to release God’s people from slavery. But Pharaoh wouldn’t listen.
    Sometimes God uses our circumstances to test our faith. We don’t always know how to interpret the things that happen to us.
  7. Through His Spirit
    We are made in the image of God, and when we confess Jesus and follow Him as our Lord and Savior, His Spirit comes to live in us (John 14:17, 1 Corinthians 3:16). God’s Spirit speaks to us through our conscience, helping to make the right decision. When we’re tempted, that same Spirit warns and nudges us to do the right thing.
    As a writer, I depend on God’s Spirit to give me direction.
  8. Through Prayer
    Each way I’ve shared that God may speak to us today meshes into the other. God often speaks to us through His Spirit, through prayer. We may not know how to pray, but God’s Word tells us His spirit makes intercession for us (Romans 8:26-27). Sometimes while praying, God’s Spirit will remind us of a Scripture or a truth in His Word that we can directly apply to the situation.

Does God speak to all of us the same way? No, we are all unique. Are these the only ways God speaks today? No. He’s a creative God. He speaks so many ways, including through miracles. In other countries where Christianity is taboo, God is also revealing Himself repeatedly through dreams.

Regardless of the way God chooses to reveal Himself or “speak” to us today, remember one truth. He will never contradict His Word, and the message He gives will always bring glory to God. The Bible warns about adding anything to the already written, God-breathed Word of God, or accepting any other messenger who claims to be superior to Jesus (Revelation 22:18-19;2 Corinthians 11:4).

The effect of yelling depends largely on the listener. My wife and I both find it utterly intolerable. If the person has a rational argument, we will hear it if it is expressed quietly. If it is an irrational argument, we don’t want to hear it at all.

Apparently you don’t mind it.

I have long since decided that listening to sermons is an utter waste of time, since the correct information to incorrect information ratio is too low, and the information to noise ratio is terrible. Give me a simple written article any day. I hate training videos for the same reason.