We must develop spiritual ears to hear the Spirits leading. There are guidelines we can follow to help us be sure we are hearing our Spirit-led conscience accurately. We'll call them the 5M's of correctly hearing God.
1. Look for the message of the spirit.
Listen tot he Holy Spirit. Don't just casually ask God for guidance. Consciously turn your attention inward to see if what you are sensing carries the weight of God or if it is the unsure, unsteady voice of your own conscience.
2. Live in the mode of prayer
Submit what you hear back to God in prayer. Throughout your day when the issue comes to mind, don't spend time worrying; spend time handing the issue over to God.
3. Search out the model of scripture.
Carefully consider the scriptures. Does what you think you're hearing in anyway contradict the character of God or the word of God.
4. Submit to the ministry of eli
Seek the counsel of a wise, more mature believer who can discern Gods leading in his or her own life.
5. Expect the mercy of confirmation
God desires for you to know his will. He's not hiding it from you. When I ask the Lord to confirm what he is saying to me through the holy spirit so I can be sure he is indeed speaking, He allows the Holy Spirit to speak to me and verify his message through his written word, circumstances, or even another person.
Think of a time you sensed the spirit leading you.
Here's an illustration:
Debbie felt that God was showing her that he wanted to cut some things from her life so that she could focus more time on her relationship with God. After seeking him in prayer she asked for confirmation. Her bible study that day was on Det 30:6 - " The Lord your God will circumcise your heart and the heart of your descendants, to love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul, so that you may live."
When she opened a book later that day the section she was reading was titled "A circumcised heart."
At bible study that week, the leader told her that he sensed she was about to experience a shaking in her life for the purpose of getting rid of that which kept her from being fully his.
God emphatically confirmed his word.