How to Start Prophesying

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How to Start Prophesying | Millennials with Meaning
Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

I was intrigued by the gift of prophecy starting when I was a young girl. I didn’t see it in action very often, but I knew it existed, that it was in the Bible, and that it was pretty cool.

What I didn’t realize then is that anyone can prophesy and God speaks to everyone.

Once I became aware of these two key principles, I wanted to grow in the gift of prophecy but I didn’t know how. I had reached a point where I knew I was hearing from God, but I didn’t feel like I was hearing from God for others.

I had no idea how or where to get training in this area. Eventually I came across Truth to Table’s Prophetic Personalities course, read a few books on prophecy, and ultimately I went to Bethel School of Supernatural Ministry.

When I got to BSSM, I was surprised how little instruction we actually received when it came to prophesying. Instead, we were given opportunities to simply go for it and take risks, learning from our mistakes in a safe environment with our classmates and leaders. There were times I got it wrong, and there were times I got it right.

Around this same time, someone recommended Dan McCollam’s book Basic Training for Prophetic Activation to me. I found this book to be a great tool for activating the gift of prophecy. It gives you starting points that you can then run with. Some of the following ideas came from this book; others I’ve picked up elsewhere or dreamed up myself.

Here are a few exercises to get the prophetic flow going:

  1. Ask God to give you a Bible verse for someone. This is the simplest way to start: by prophesying God’s literal Word! Share with someone an encouraging verse that comes to mind that seems relevant to their season.
  2. Ask, “If this person was a Bible character, who would he or she be?” Tell that person which Bible character you see in him/her and why. Which specific characteristics or experiences match up with this person’s?
  3. My personal favorite: Ask, “If this person was a Disney character, which one would he or she be?” This may sound less spiritual than choosing a Bible character but can be Holy Spirit-inspired all the same. (God knows how to speak our languages, and Disney happens to be one of mine!) The goal of prophecy is edification, exhortation, and comfort. Ask the Holy Spirit how you can encourage this person.
  4. Ask the Lord, “What do you have to say to this person?” Sometimes this simple question is the best one to ask. Listen to the voice of the Holy Spirit and then repeat what you hear. It doesn’t have to be long or complex; just share whatever you get. Sometimes more will come to you; other times you’ll just get a short phrase or even one word.
  5. Ask God, “What season is this person in and how do you want to encourage them in this season?” Are they in spring, summer, winter, or fall? The Bible says, “To everything there is a season,” and the season someone’s in can provide a lot of insight and direction.
  6. Ask the Holy Spirit, “What word do you have for this person in this season?” This is what I ask God for myself at the start of each new year. Maybe the word is “peace” or “joy.” Maybe it’s “hope” or “restoration.” Listen for God to give you one word, and share that word with the person in front of you to encourage him or her.
  7. Ask God, “What do you love about this person?” I guarantee you he has a whole list. He fearfully and wonderfully created this person!
  8. Ask the Father, “What about this person makes you proud?” Like any loving father, he is proud of his children. He knows we are imperfect humans, but he celebrates our wins and rejoices over us.

Remember that any word you give should be a source of edification, exhortation, or comfort. This isn’t an opportunity to condemn people or air their dirty laundry. It’s an opportunity to give them a love letter from their Heavenly Father. Get in tune with his heart for people, and the words will start to flow, because he is always speaking!

But he who prophesies speaks edification and exhortation and comfort to men.

1 Corinthians 14:3 NKJV
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