"God can talk by thunder because thunder is really God talking out loud," says Dianna, age 8.
I'm not sure how this works, but Lane, 7, will explain: "God is in heaven, and when you are high, it's easy to talk down."
Oh, I get it. It's kind of like being on top of a mountain and shouting down to those below.
Friends, if you want to focus on God speaking from high places, remember Mount Sinai, where Moses received the Ten Commandments. But first consider Moses' experience when he was a shepherd in the desert. He heard God's voice from an unusual bush that kept on burning.
Because Moses was spiritually alert, he inspected the burning bush. He heard the voice of God, and it transformed him into the deliverer of the Hebrew people.
On the mountaintop, we expect to hear God's voice. Yet, often we're deaf to God's voice in the ordinary bushes of our everyday experiences.
Who knows? Maybe God wants to use you to deliver a nation. If not a nation, maybe he's calling you to deliver a neighbor from self-destruction.
As Chad, 8, says, "God can talk to us when there is something he wants us to do."
Before you act, make sure you hear God's voice first. Remember what happened to Moses the first time he tried to deliver his people. He killed an Egyptian taskmaster and had to flee into the wilderness, where he spent 40 years caring for sheep.
Hannah, 9, says God's voice may not be audible: "God used to talk out loud so that people could hear him like any other person. Now he doesn't do that. He talks to us through our hearts. It sounds pretty hard to do, but God can do anything. God sort of puts the idea in our heads, and somehow, it just works!"
"God puts it in your heart, and it goes all the way to your brain," says Taylor, who at 6 years old has a distinct advantage over adults. God's voice has a shorter distance to travel between his heart and brain.
Before listening to their hearts, Hannah and Taylor would do well to listen to the prophet Jeremiah, who wrote, "The heart is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked."
God promises to transform deceitful hearts by placing the Holy Spirit into all those who trust Jesus as Savior. "Do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit?" wrote the Apostle Paul to the Christians in Corinth.
But even a new heart needs a new program. "I think the way God talks to us is through the Bible, but we must read and study it," says Kyle, 12. Why? "Because the Bible is God's word," adds Ryan, 10.
Think of the Bible as a love letter from God. When God speaks directly to the hearts of his people, it will never contradict his love letter, the Bible. For example, if you think you hear God telling you to steal something, it's not his voice.
While some view prayer as a one-way street -- from us to God -- Adriane, 10, says it's two-way: "God can talk to us by answering our prayers. If we ask him to do something in our prayers, and he does it, that is him answering our prayer. God does not have to speak (in an audible voice) to be able to talk to you."
Quietness is the key, says Hillary, 6: "When you pray to God, and you're very still and quiet, you can hear him."
Have you been missing out on the greatest conversation you could have because you haven't been still?
Point to ponder: God wants to talk to all his children. Scripture to remember: "Be still, and know that I am God" (Psalm 46:10a).
Question to consider: Has God spoken to you today?
Inspire your children by reading this column with them and visiting the Kids Talk About God website. Bible quotations are from the New King James Version.
And -- You'll smile, laugh and wonder when you see the new KTAG TV commercials and hear the radio spots at www.KidsTalkAboutGod.org.
© 2004 CAREY KINSOLVING