How to Develop Sensitivity to the Holy Spirit

Do you want to be sensitive to the Holy Spirit, His leading and His desires? Is your prayer, ‘Lord help me to see what You see, and to feel what You feel?’

Many prophetic people have a great hunger for the Presence of the Holy Spirit—it is how we are wired.

Sensitivity to the Holy SpiritGod’s desire is that all of His people to develop sensitivity to the Holy Spirit. He wants us to have an intimate relationship with Him.

The skilled sailor of a yacht is alert, aware of every shift of the wind, adjusting the sails accordingly. We can be like the sailor—expectant, positioned and ready to adjust to the moving of the Holy Spirit.

How to Develop Sensitivity to the Holy Spirit

Here are 2 significant keys to developing sensitivity to the Holy Spirit:

1. The Key of Compatibility with the Holy Spirit: Have a Love Relationship with Him

”…those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires.’ (Rom 8:5)

The most important place to begin developing sensitivity to the Holy Spirit is with what Prophet David McCracken calls, ‘Compatibility with the Holy Spirit’.

If we want to live constantly in touch with the Holy Spirit, then our hearts and our lifestyle need to be compatible with Him. We need to be in harmony with Him.

This is not about a ‘performance’ of dos and don’ts and obeying rules. It is about having a love relationship with Him; one in which you don’t want to do anything that would bring Him hurt or displeasure.

‘Or do you think that the Scripture says in vain, “The Spirit who dwells in us yearns jealously”? (James 4:5 NKJV)

We live from a foundation of grace, not of ‘works.’ And yet the fruit of a grace and relationship-based life should naturally be holiness, and purity of heart and lifestyle.

We hear our Father say, ‘You are my beloved son, my beloved daughter. I am well pleased with you.’ Our heart’s response is the desire to please Him. And that overflows into everything we think, say and do, in what we choose to cast our eyes upon, and in every attitude of our heart.

‘For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God. The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, “Abba, Father.” (Romans 8:14-15)

2. The Key of Obedience to the Holy Spirit: Respond to His Prompts

Obedience is about responding to the Holy Spirit when He indicates something to you.

The more you respond to the Holy Spirit, the more sensitive you become to His leadings, His prompts and His desires.

Jesus said, ‘Take My yoke upon you and learn of Me’. (Matt 11:29) In Bible times, two oxen were joined together with a wooden yoke so that they could work together in harness, in unison. Jesus’ yoke is one of grace—it is light. However, we get to choose whether or not to be sensitive to where He is leading. We choose to stay in sync with him.

Our desire should be to respond to His lightest movement. When we are in harmony with the Spirit of God, miracles will take place! As we grow in our experience of responding to Him, our sensitivity to Him will increase.

Conversely, when we refuse to respond to Him, or ignore Him, our sensitivity to the Holy Spirit becomes dulled.

Pull With the Holy Spirit, or Away from Him?

In Exodus 33, God speaks to Moses and He says these distressing words: “Go up to the land flowing with milk and honey. But I will not go with you, because you are a stiff-necked people and I might destroy you on the way.”

A whole nation has experienced the manifest Presence of God in the fire and the cloud. God’s Presence is the most valuable thing they have—and now God says because they are ‘stiff-necked’, they will lose His Presence.

Being ‘stiff-necked’ in Scripture, is a metaphor for being stubborn and willful. One Bible encyclopaedia suggests that the metaphor relates to the driver directing the oxen, as they pulled the carts. [1] A goad—a long pole with a sharp end—was used to direct them. A touch to the neck would indicate the direction the driver wanted the ox to take. However, a stubborn ox would not respond to the touch of the goad—in which case a sharper jab would be required. [2]

This stirs my heart—and I pray it stirs yours.

One man, one hungry heart is contending for the Presence of God. Because Moses would not settle for less, God’s manifest Presence remained with Israel. We can be the contender for the Presence of God for our own lives, as well as our families, our workplaces, our churches and ministries, our towns, cities and regions.

I love the metaphor of the yoke, because it is a vivid picture of how we can respond to the direction of the Spirit. Will we respond to His lightest touch? Will we be sensitive to His desires? Or will we pull against Him?

When you respond to His lightest touch—are faithful to obey Him—you will develop sensitivity to His Spirit. And when you miss it, simply repent, tell Him how sorry you are, and don’t linger in that place of remorse. God’s arms are always open for you to return to that place of communion with Him.


[1] See

[2] In Acts 26:14, Paul relates Jesus’ words to him: ‘We all fell to the ground, and I heard a voice saying to me in Aramaic, ‘Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me? It is hard for you to kick against the goads.’ This relates to a Greek proverb—if the ox resists being directed, it has the sharp prick of the goad pressed into it. [See]

Related Posts:

How You Can Have An Intimate Relationship With The Holy Spirit

Relational Pathways to Intimacy with Father, with Jesus and with Holy Spirit

7 Ways to Grow in Intimacy with the Holy Spirit

© 2016 Helen Calder   Enliven Ministries: In the David McCracken Ministries Family

Enliven Blog – Prophetic Teaching

22 thoughts on “How to Develop Sensitivity to the Holy Spirit

  1. Irene Kyriacou

    Dear Helen, thank you again just reading your Teaching has made me HUNGRY for MORE of GOD.
    Yes, I GREATLY desire MORE Sensitivity to the HOLY SPIRIT, and to KNOW the HEART of GOD so much MORE in DEEPER Ways. My Prayer is “LORD JESUS Help me to be able to SEE and HEAR with MORE CLARITY, Help me LORD to Move in Step with YOUR Precious HOLY SPIRIT. I Pray that I may GROW in the EVER-INCREASING Knowledge of my LORD and SAVIOUR JESUS CHRIST, that I may KNOW JESUS MORE and MORE, that I may KNOW the HEART of GOD in such a DEEPER way, that my Heart would BEAT with the HEARTBEAT of GOD as ONE, this is my Prayer LORD, the cry of my Heart”.

  2. Manqoba Enock

    Greetings. I am powerfully blessed by your messages indeed. They are seasoned and well timed. This is indeed prophetic to me showing me the works and the leading of the Holy Spirit. When I was busy searching about the prophetic warfare and declarations last week….after I just taught the church a little….then I got the message after service that gave me more assurance that the promise land is at the hand of my enemies and they don’t give it out easy.
    Yesterday I was praying about this sensitivity to the Spirit leading and the things that makes us dull to his voice and promptings…. After I taught the church a little about this…I got the message after service that you sent confirming all I needed. Thank you so much that God Almighty is using you to bless my life and I am growing by your teachings. They are simplified but rich. Thank you so much and keep on doing the good work. Pastor Enock (Delmas- SA)

  3. Nicholas

    1. Can you please help me with how to enter into the presence of God during pray.
    2. Also how to practice meditation on the scriptures until it becomes fresh and alive in my life.

    1. Bukola

      I believe to enter into the presence of God during prayer is by praise worship, worship Him in spirit and in truth, exalt the name of the Lord, Give in your best with no holding back, Humble your self and ask for forgiveness of sin as well, lastly invite the Holy Spirit to help to pray and have His way. This always help me and l hope it help you too. Shalom

  4. jose ramos

    Cada dia trato de obedecer al SEÑOR…yo se que mi caminar no es del todo como quisiera,pues mantengo luchas cada dia,me cuido de la sutilezas del enemigo,he estado mas consiente del mundo y de las cosas que hay en el mundo,pido al SEÑOR que me ayude en todo ello.
    Creo que cada dia,estoy mas consiente de mi caminar con EL en continua santidad,no deseo ser una montaña rusa en este caminar,arriba y abajo.Le ruego sus oraciones por ello.He estado haciendo lo que me sugiere en mensajes resientes,lo cual le agradezco.Me han ayudado .Oro por usted y su ministerio,como por su familia.Espero narrar algo que me ha estado sucediendo ultimamente,eso lo comentare despues.Le ruego orar por mi pais.!saludos!

  5. jose ramos

    el Señor habla a todos aquellos que son nacidos de nuevo,y mas a aquellos que tienen un Ministerio u Oficio,y que el medio para que Dios nos ministre es la oracion.Doy gracias al Señor por todo este tiempo de oracion y ayuno que tengo,le ruego orar porque Dios me ayude en esa espera que tiene para mi .Quiero decirle que tengo mis luchas terribles con el enemigo,hago guerra espiritual cada dia en contra de el.
    Estoy orando por esos nueve pastores australianos que estan en prision,por haber orado en un lugar determinado.Dios bendiga a ellos y a sus familias.Oro por usted y su ministerio,y los miembros de su familia,le ruego orar por Mexico,pasa por un momento dificil,por la violencia y drogas.!saludos!

  6. Francis

    Thank you so much. I would love to be more sensitive to the Holy Spirit. So, I need help. Thanks. Francis

  7. Judith

    Thanks Helen For this wonderful message. I hope to be blessed by more of your messages.

  8. Cephas Chelebela

    I desire to increase my senitivity towards the holy spirit.
    Please I beg that you help and support me as I continue entering into the Prophetic..
    Please respond to me.
    You could support me also with Literature.
    Cephas Chelebela

    1. Helen Calder Post author

      Hi Cephas, I don’t have printed literature, but of you sign up to the blog you will receive the free weekly articles.

  9. Ogochukwu Caroline Christyna Chukwurah

    Yes, I truly desire a closer walk with the Man- Blessed Holy spirit.

  10. Seth

    I am indeed too desperate to wait for the activation of my senses to the voice and prompting of the Holy Spirit
    pls help me really get there!!
    Thanks a lot for these essencial teaching.
    I am an Apostle in Bible training college.

    1. Helen Calder Post author

      Hi Seth, thank you for leaving the note! Take a look at the other articles I have listed above in the ‘related posts.’ I pray you are richly blessed. You are hungry for Him – and that is the first key to growing in sensitivity to the Spirit

  11. Mary Davenport

    I am hungering for closeness to the Holy Spirit. I work late most days with the exception of a few. Im always tired and fatigued due to being a counselor. My prayer life and word life have suffered due to my work. I went to school and got a degree becausevi couldnt find a job and i wanted to help others. Though my job is rewarding and i know God is using me to help others i feel like I am drowning spiritually…HELP PLEASE

  12. Mary Davenport

    I left a comment the other night about drowning spiritually due to working so much but since thst night. I am feeling closer to God and He is waking me up early to pray…i welcome comments and suggestions about getting closer to the Lord because I realize that this takes time and sacrifice…thank you

  13. Yvonne Hills

    Hello Helen, I would like to be very sensitive to the leading and Guiding of the Holy Spirit and Obedient to him . I am in a learning stage right now a lot of trial and error. Please pray for me.

  14. Racheal

    I really appreciate your article. Due to my insensitivity to the Holy Spirit, I missed divine Favour twice and I was so sad. I cried and cried and kept asking God to bring it back. Now I know I’m to simply ask for forgiveness, change my countenance and give myself more to the Word of God so that the Holy Spirit can help me better. I really desire the sensitivity of the Holy Spirit because one encounter with Him brings an end to several years of frutility.

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