EDITOR'S NOTE
: The following is an excerpt from 
Nine Ways God Always Speaks by Mark Herringshaw and Jennifer Schuchmann (Tyndale House).

Channel 101.0: Hearing Voices

Some things are too good to be true:

  • living to be 101
  • winning the lottery
  • hearing God speak

Despite the fact that these things are out of the ordinary and even unlikely, they happen every day to people all over the world. With a healthy diet, exercise, and regular checkups, it’s possible that you could outlast your genes. Buy enough scratch-off tickets, and eventually you’ll get lucky. But hearing God speak? Is there anything you can do about that?

We think so.

And so do others.

Many others.

One of them was Mrs. Murphey. Whenever God spoke to Mrs. Murphey, it usually signaled a painful or traumatic event in her family. As her son Cecil recalls, this particular time was no different:

My brother was maybe five feet two and weighed around one hundred pounds. He was a career man in the Navy, and he worked belowdecks. One night my mother had a dream that his ship had hit something, and when my brother went into the compartment to try and shut it off, he got trapped. This all happened in my mother’s dream. She was agitated, but there was nothing she could do. There was no way for her to communicate with her son, and besides, who would believe her anyway?

A few weeks later, she was at a prayer meeting at our church in Davenport, Iowa. It was a mostly fundamental church, not the kind that believed in visions from God. But while she was there, she was gripped by a panic that what she dreamed was happening right then. She interrupted the meeting and said, “My son is drowning. You have to pray for him right now!”

The whole group stopped what they were doing and prayed for ten or fifteen minutes. A sense of peace came over my mother, and she told them they could stop. It was over.

About two weeks later, we got a letter at the house. It was from my brother, and he told us that he had almost drowned. The ship went aground, and one compartment started to take on water. My brother and several others went to close it off. In the confusion, the others left the compartment, locking my brother in.

He said that the water kept rising until it was above his neck and almost at his mouth when one of the guys said, “Where’s Murph?” They figured out he was in the compartment, and they returned to rescue him.

Though the dream and the events surrounding it took place nearly a half-century ago, Cecil Murphey still remembers the details. His mother was known for having dreams that predicted terrible events—events of which she couldn’t have had prior knowledge.

Cecil recalls a second dream, in which his mother learned about a divorce in the family (at a time when divorce was very rare) before the couple announced it. In still another dream, she was warned that another brother of Cecil’s was dying of lung cancer before he had been diagnosed. Cecil believes his mother heard from God.

Is it possible for God to speak through dreams?

Cecil believes that God also speaks to him—just not through his dreams.

Off the top of his head, Cecil can quickly tell nearly a dozen stories of when God has spoken, helping him to ­perceive future events, make decisions, or gain insight into situations that he wouldn’t have been able to except through divine knowledge.

He describes hearing God’s voice inside of himself like an “anointed intuition.”