Opinion seems divided on whether it gets harder or easier to hear God's voice as you go through the Christian life. I understand the viewpoint that part of the maturing process is to experience the apparent silence of God, as it makes you more reliant on seeking God for God alone, and not for what He might be able to do for you. But it would appear to be unfortunate timing that just as you might be mature enough to take on leadership of some sort, you begin to find it more and more difficult to discern God's actual voice.
The more I read Old and New Testament accounts of how God spoke with individuals, the more detached they appear to be from my actual experience. I have never heard a long message from God which itemises everything in such detail as per bible accounts. It's been much more an impression, a hunch, a 'feeling' (oh, but you can't trust your feelings....) that maybe, it's just possible, that I might just think about considering doing such and such. As an option amongst other possible options, of course.
You can imagine the chaos if this impressionistic, hunch-like feeling were all that the bible heroes had to go on:
Moses: I've got this sort of hunch that maybe we should build a kind of building thing for God to be worshipped in...
Aaron: Could you be more specific?
Moses: Well, I think maybe we ought to use some, maybe, building materials...?
Aaron: Yesss.........what did you have in mind?
Moses: Well, I had a vague impression that maybe something that will last a bit longer than tents....?
Aaron (to himself: this is going to be painful...)
Ananias: I had a very small feeling this morning that maybe there's someone who needs my help out there...
Mrs Ananias: Yes? Anyone in particular?
Ananias: To be honest I can't really be sure - someone who's possibly quite nearby?
Mrs Ananias: Well, the maidservant's been very glum recently...
Ananias: Not, not her....Oh, I dunno, I'll ponder it for a few weeks and see if I get any clarity...
Mrs Ananias: Probably best; we are awfully busy these days...
Or for that matter: Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King: 'I have a hunch....'
But maybe there's more to be said for the hunch than first meets the eye. I had one a few days ago. I thought it was probably just me, but I pondered my hunch and sent an email, in which I chose some words carefully, on a hunch. Which led to an impression that I should pray for someone. Which led to a conversation around a decision that needed God's guidance. Guidance that in His great kindness, He apparently wanted me to be involved in.
So today I am giving thanks for the hunch. It may not quite be divine lightning falling from the heavens; it may not lead to a huge new Cathedral being built round here, or someone being miraculously healed of blindness; but it may just be the still small voice that, especially this Lent, I need to hear and act upon.