Hearing God’s Voice and Brain Science – Virkler & Lehman

Mark Virkler's picture

I have recently had the joy of building a friendship with Dr. Karl Lehman who is a board-certified psychiatrist and the author of Outsmarting Yourself and The Immanuel Approach (750 pages long). Dr. Karl has especially worked to integrate faith-based emotional healing with insights provided by psychological and neurological research.


Dr. Karl has come to the point of making the voice of God central in his practice, and he and I were amazed at how many similarities we have between us, even though we had never heard of each other until just a couple of months ago.

So I asked Dr. Karl if we could do a podcast where I shared my basic four keys to hearing God’s voice, and then had him share his understanding of brain science as it relates to the use of these four keys.  This 45-minute video podcast covers Christian spirituality from theological and scientific perspectives, focusing on what the Bible says about hearing God’s voice, and what insights brain science has to help us understand and deepen our experiences of hearing God’s voice and in leading others into their own conversations with God.


Watch on YouTube | Listen to Podcast

 

Several of Dr. Karl’s insights

You will discover Dr. Karl notes several incremental steps which deepen one’s experience when hearing God’s voice. Here they are first in my words and second in Dr. Karl’s, as the synergy of two is better than one operating alone.

  1. You receive flowing thoughts and pictures which are generally being registered in the right hemisphere of the brain.

Dr. Karl adds the following: You receive flowing thoughts and pictures from the Lord, but sometimes these thoughts and pictures do not spontaneously pass through the parts of your brain that help you to feel they are important and to recognize what they mean (the front of your brain, on both the right and left sides). In these situations, you will miss subtle (but important!) content from the Lord because you don’t feel its importance or recognize its meaning.

  1. As you journal them out, you are drawing upon the abilities of the left hemisphere, thus deepening the impact of what God is revealing.

Dr. Karl adds the following: As you journal, the process of finding words to describe your mental content helps pull the content through the front of your brain on the left side, which is especially involved in recognizing the meaning of your thoughts and pictures. This will help you to recognize some subtle manifestations of the Lord’s presence, and some subtle content from the Lord that you would otherwise miss.

  1. As you speak them to a friend, your face and eyes convey even more meaning, emotion, and life, and the impact of your communion with God is deepened once again.

Dr. Karl adds the following: As you share your journaling with a friend, in a face-to-face encounter, the process of interacting with your friend’s face helps pull the thoughts and pictures through the front of your brain on the right side, which is involved in both feeling the importance of the thoughts and pictures and recognizing the meaning of the thoughts and pictures. This will help you to recognize even more subtle manifestations of the Lord’s presence, and even more subtle content from the Lord that you would otherwise miss.

  1. The Cadillac experience is when you do your journaling together as a group and share it together as a group. This produces the greatest spiritual transforming response, as the affirmation of the group is powerfully enriching.

Dr. Karl adds the following: The Cadillac experience is when you do your journaling together as a group, and share the thoughts and pictures with the others in your group immediately as they come to you. This helps pull the thoughts and pictures through the front of your brain on both the left and right sides immediately after they come into your awareness when even the most subtle pieces are still fresh. So this Cadillac experience will be especially effective in helping you to fully perceive the richness of the Lord’s presence and to fully feel the importance and understand the meaning of everything He is sharing with you.

My reflections on what Dr. Karl shared

I agree that in seminars, when I have people journal and share their journaling in small groups of two and then several stand and share their journaling with the entire group, hearts are powerfully touched and tears flow freely.

So I will choose when possible to not just email my journaling to my spiritual advisors, but meet personally or do a Zoom session and read it to them for the added power of the face-to-face encounter. In addition, I will continue to look for any and all opportunities to journal together in groups and share journaling with one another.

Steps that deepen the power and impact of the revelation you receive

  1. Writing it down (Rev. 1:9-11)
  2. Speaking it aloud (Jer. 1:11,12; Amos 8:1,2)
  3. Have it confirmed (Compatible with Scripture, lines up with the names of Jesus, produces peace in heart, Your spiritual advisor’s heart confirms it is from God, produces good fruit)

These steps cause revelation to become clearer and more believable since you are engaging more parts of your brain and body plus adding the affirmation from others. Incorporate these steps!

Thank you, Dr. Karl, and folks, be on the lookout for our second podcast next week, where we follow the same pattern in discussing inner healing.

A summary statement

Dr. Karl Lehman, the founder of “The Immanuel Approach” and Dr. Mark Virkler, founder of Christian Leadership University, are in agreement that God’s voice is easy to hear and an essential part of the inner healing ministry (Jn. 10:27; 6:63). God’s revelation is received as flowing, spontaneous thoughts, pictures, and feelings bubbling up from the River of the Spirit within (Jn. 7:37-39). This revelation is to be honored, written down, and shared with another in order to experience its maximum transforming power (Rev. 1:9-11). Jesus, the Wonderful Counselor, is to be given a central place in all inner healing ministry. Inner healing should begin, continue, and end by drawing upon the Spirit’s continuous revelation, which ushers in direct personal encounter with the Wonderful Counselor.

All revelation is ultimately confirmed by ensuring it is in agreement with the Bible, by observing that it produces good fruit (for example, peace in the recipient’s heart), and by confirming specific content in discernment with the recipient’s community. 

Continue on...

Dr. Karl and Dr Virkler do another podcats titled: Inner Healing Methods by Virkler and Lehman

Related Resources: 

How to Hear God's Voice!   

Related Blogs: 

How to Hear God’s Voice   
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