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Helping Your Child Hear God’s Voice

“How do I help my child hear God’s voice?” It’s a question that we often get here at the Children’s Equipping Center. Parents, pastors, and children’s ministry leaders have a fervent desire to help their children learn how to communicate with the Holy Spirit and understand what He is speaking to them. However, there is no simple 5-step process that we can give as an easy answer to this question. In fact, we may be asking the wrong question. The right question is, “How do I cultivate an environment where my child can develop an intimate relationship with Jesus in which my child is both communicating to Him and receiving communication from Him?”

In Luke 18:16, Jesus told the disciples to “Let the little children come to Me, and do not forbid them; for of such is the kingdom of God.” We believe that with these words, Jesus expressed what was in the Father’s heart for children. Jesus gave His exposition on children’s ministry and answered all of our questions about how to equip them in one statement: the kingdom of God is theirs. It already belongs to them. In other words, the kingdom of God is just as accessible to children as it is to adults. In fact, Jesus told the disciples that to enter into that kingdom, they should become more like the children! As parents, pastors, and children’s ministry leaders, we must start from the understanding that our children were created to know God and know His voice, and then we must teach, train, and release them to do so.

In the Children’s Equipping Center, we begin teaching the language of the Bible and the nature of God at age 1. We believe it is important to give them the language of prayer, show them the Father’s heart for them, teach them what Jesus has done for them, and introduce them to the Holy Spirit, which lays the foundation for their relationship with the living God. The young children are taught to believe that God has countless precious thoughts about them that He desires to share. We pray for them and teach them to pray for their ears to be opened and eyes to be enlightened and to believe for the promise of the Holy Spirit in Acts 2:17.

As children grow older, we like to train them to identify the different ways in which God can speak, for example through nature, the Bible, wisdom, situations, dreams, visions, words of knowledge, and of course, through His audible voice. We also help children identify various messages they could be hearing in their own mind by examining the content of what they are hearing. For example, God’s voice is truth and will not contradict Scripture or tell us to exhibit ungodly behavior or hurt anyone or break His commandments; it speaks about us surrendering more to Him and His desires; it always gives us a peace, even when asking us to do something hard; it always gives us a choice to obey or not; it is gentle and guiding; it carries authority; it brings conviction but not condemnation (telling us we are bad); it is always wise; it is in harmony with His Word, character, and nature. Satan’s voice lies and will never validate God or the Scriptures; it is self-centered, making everything about me (example: she was wrong and I’m right); it does not have peace; it is demanding and pushy (do it now, don’t wait); it commands and gives no choice; it is unwise and deceptive; it causes uneasiness and feels contradicting. We teach 5 Questions to Ask about the message you may be hearing:

  1. Does this word help me to respect the Lord and depart from evil?
  2. Does it increase my faith in my knowledge of God and understanding of the Scriptures?
  3. Will my actions following these words be full of and bear the fruit of the Spirit?
  4. Will these words strengthen me with might so I can keep going no matter what?
  5. Does it cause me to experience joyfulness and thanksgiving to the Father?

We also release the children to practice hearing God’s voice for others, in a safe and supervised environment, for the purpose of encouraging and building others up.

We hope we have given you a fresh perspective on the question of helping children to discern God’s voice, along with some ideas for teaching and training them. The Holy Spirit has divine ideas on how to equip your child, so ask Him for wisdom and guidance in how to best parent or lead your child or children into a deeper relationship with Jesus.

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