Understanding (recognition of WHAT is being said, by revelation and experience)
Once we realize it is indeed the Lord speaking to us, the next task is identifying what He is saying to us. Over time we will begin to become familiar with the way He speaks to us individually, but at first, as our confidence is nurtured by the Spirit, it is often helpful to approach this aspect of training fairly objectively. Keeping a record, or talking it over with a trusted friend may be helpful. There’s no rush; God’s goal is relationship with you, not holding it against you that you may not hear Him as accurately as you’d like.
God is speaking to us 24/7/365 in our spirit. What is He saying? Very often, it’s the same things that we speak to our family and friends about on a regular basis—what’s going on in our life, what are we going to do today, how much He loves us. He doesn’t want us to “over-react” to what He says to us; He’s usually not that dramatic. We find that as we are tuned to His voice, most of what we hear from Him is very general because we’re already becoming one with Him in our soul. As our purposes, desires and motivations become joined to His, He will not be instructing us to do what we are already doing, or encouraging us under specific circumstances, because we have “become” courage.
There are, of course, times when we will be able to identify a specific message or idea from the Lord. Think of the direction Moses received concerning the tabernacle and priesthood, and the mathematical and construction details relayed to Noah for the ark. We have so much more available to us today—we have the Living Christ dwelling and speaking within us. Don’t be surprised if the Lord begins to find ways to stretch your hearing to accommodate His details, whether in financial matters, travel, or any matter that may arise.