When we are dealing with the God who made everything, including every cell in our physical bodies and all the space He inhabits within our atoms – in Him we live and move and have our being (Acts 17:28) – there is every justifiable reason why we might get confused about hearing His voice or experiencing His presence. He is so close! In fact the English word “close” does not do justice to the amazing interaction of God with those He has an intimate relationship with.
So we can often think we are just imagining things when it is in fact God speaking to us. One of the great things to learn how to do is to recognise that still, small voice that speaks to us out of the chaos and noise of everyday life (see 1 Kings 19:11-13). To know His presence is even more intricate. It is so intangible, so outside of, and yet works through, our emotional state. We forget that we were made, designed, to know these things. God’s voice and His presence can seem so natural we can just dismiss them as our imagination. But even our imagination was made to enhance and help us understand the voice and presence of God.
“Today, if you hear His voice, do not harden your hearts.” (Hebrews 3:7, 15). Actually, this is the nub of the matter: Do you really want to hear what God is saying to you (see John 7:17)? Might He be saying, get out of the way and let Me work? Possibly, though He will say it, if He has to, more graciously than that.