When our family was very little, we noticed that one of our boys had a strong prophetic gifting. We were very amazed at how he would speak out and have endless words of knowledge in general life, without really trying or knowing a thing about a circumstance. I recall the time he came into the bathroom, as I was cleaning the bath, and announced for me to ring my friend Michele. I got up and did so, and found out she was in great pain, needing some comfort on a difficult day!
Another time, we were in church, and our son rose up in the middle of a meeting and prophesied. He was four years old at the time. The church had had so many words about prayer and seeking God and to be honest they ignored them all. One of the pastors was giving a message to the leaders which we had been invited to. The pastor was saying how sometimes God just speaks in a soft voice and you can hardly hear it. Suddenly out of nowhere, our little boy stood up, after having been lying on the floor listening to this and yelled out “and sometimes He shouts!”Needless to say, that was the end of that.
Indeed, sometimes God shouts at His Bride.
It’s a bit like that in marriage, right? You can have an argument but until you really listen you won’t hear. Someone can be shouting at you, but you can’t hear it because your heart is not listening.
In community, we can develop a listening culture around the prophetic. When God speaks through one prophet, it is super important we take notice. Sometimes prophetic words can clash and so we need to defer to one another in a spirit of humility. Or perhaps everyone has a part of the word, but it’s a case of discerning the overall anatomy of the word. An immature prophet will think this is a paradox that cannot be understood, but God is able to give grace to hear all that He is saying through different sources, whilst still holding it in check with wisdom and intelligence.
The word communicate, is the Greek word koinonikos, which comes from the word koinonia, the word for fellowship. This reveals to us the similarity between coming together and listening! Community is a listening place, where we tune our hearts and lives to the voice of God. The greatest gift we give ourselves is the time to stop and tune in – to listen and to observe. It’s in these times we will hear both the whispers of God or perhaps we might hear His shouts too! One thing is for sure, we won’t miss God if we are keen to learn. It takes effort for true prophetic community to develop.
In what areas of your heart life is God speaking today? In what ways has your community developed a prophetic culture? If you are a leader, how can you help develop a community of tuned in listening people?