Hearing from God in our halftime journey is key. Having confirmation that we are headed in the right direction gives us peace and courage.

In this Q&A, I’ll share some of my story and some observations I’ve made over the years about listening to God. My hope is that it resonates and proves useful to you on your journey. If you want to continue the conversation about your halftime journey, and how our team can help, please don’t hesitate to contact us.


Why do we want and need to hear from God during a life transition?

I learned 25 years ago that there is nothing like a big life change to send you to your knees. My first daughter, Kelsey, was born when I was in the middle of getting my doctorate. (I know…what was I thinking??) When she was six weeks old, I was at the end of my rope. She was a colicky baby, which meant the only time she wasn’t crying was when she was asleep. I could barely find time during the day to get a shower – much less work on my studies. I remember collapsing on the couch one day and crying out to God. Right there on the couch, I made a deal with Him. I promised that the minute Kelsey went down for a nap, I would have my quiet time with Him first. Any time left over before Kelsey awoke, I would spend on my school work. Every day, I promised to give Him my most precious time of the day. God blessed my commitment tremendously and I finished my doctorate in record time. While most doctoral students require 7 years to finish, mine was complete in 4 years, all while prioritizing time with God and family over my commitment to my Ph.D.. From that day on, I knew God wanted me to make him a top priority in my life. I’ve followed this plan for the past 25 years and I’ve seen more miracles than I can number or describe. I not only need to hear from God daily, but because of what He’s done in my life, I crave it. I want His guidance and wisdom every single day…in times of calm and times of transition.

What was it like for you when you went through your own halftime journey? What did you do to try to hear God?

Once again, a life transition propelled me into my halftime journey. Both of my daughters were finally in college and in many ways, it was awesome. Keith and I could do whatever we wanted because our schedules revolved around us again. Being an empty nester was great, except for the fact that I felt that I wanted to do something significant. I felt that God had blessed me so tremendously in my first half that I had this desire to do something to give back…to make an impact for the Kingdom. I prayed about this constantly, asking God, “What would you like for me to do?” I knew that God had a plan for me (Ephesians 2:10) but for the life of me, I couldn’t figure out what I should be doing. Just as I did 25 years ago when I promised to give God my most precious time of the day, I continued to go to Him every day. After 8 months of praying, interviewing, and even giving God some pretty good suggestions on what I could do, I still didn’t have a clue as to where He was leading me. Even though God seemed to be silent on what I should be doing, I trusted that He would move me to where he wanted me when the time was right. Therefore, I decided to look around and see where I could volunteer, thinking at least I could do something to help someone while I waited. I began to volunteer at a school for underprivileged kids, all of whom lived below the poverty line. Now that I look back, I see this was the first step of God getting me ready for my sweet spot.

How do we know it is His voice?

The key to listening to God is spending time with Him so you recognize his voice. When my husband calls me on the phone, I don’t have to ask, “Who is this?” I’ve spent so much time with him that I know him instantly.

Prayer is a powerful way to know God’s voice. Simply put, prayer is time spent listening for God to speak and telling Him what is on our hearts.

We also know His voice by becoming familiar with the Bible. He speaks to us through His Word, and we can compare our experience to what we read in Scripture to confirm if it is God acting in our lives. I like to read the Bible with a piece of paper handy. I write down the verse that grabs my attention – I call it my flashing neon verse. I ask, “Lord, what are you trying to tell me/teach me from this verse today?” I then write down what comes to mind. If something comes to mind that doesn’t line up with scripture, then I know it’s not from God.

How can I remain focused so that I can hear from God?  

At the beginning of my quiet time, my mind is usually racing with things that I’m worried about, questions I want to ask God, things I need wisdom about, etc.. I simply make a list of these in my journal. Just the act of writing them down calms me down. It reminds me that I don’t have to keep going over them in my head because I’ve turned them over to Him. Then, I do my Bible reading. Quite often, a verse will flash neon that answers one or more concerns on my list.

Occasionally, I’ll need guidance on a serious matter so I ask for God to confirm what I think I’m hearing Him say. I still go to His Word every day. I still listen for His answer. But I also am on high alert, looking for confirmation from 2 more sources (such as wise Christian friends- Proverbs 11:14 NIV For lack of guidance a nation falls, but victory is won through many advisers.)

How does a coach help you to hear God during a life transition?

I was already in the habit of going to God daily and listening for his guidance, but my coach would ask me to tell him what I felt God was saying to me. Sometimes, when I verbalized what I was hearing, it became even more clear. My Christian coach was also another source of wise counsel.

Remember, God wants to speak to you. He wants to be in relationship with you. So, as you listen for Him, do so with confidence that He delights to reveal Himself to His children. The season of halftime, like many seasons of transition, can be full of confusion and many unexpected detours on the path we thought we were on. Listening to God is a key part of a successful halftime journey. We’re here to help, so don’t hesitate to reach out. Nothing gives me more joy than seeing a halftimer lock eyes with God and hear from Him about who they are and what He has in store for them!

If you’d like to have a conversation, simply fill out the form at the bottom of this page, and our team will be in touch with you shortly.

As you listen to God, may you be blown away by His love for you and His incredible faithfulness!


Rhonda Kehlbeck
Rhonda spent her first half in education; her own (a Bachelors and Masters from Baylor and a PhD from Fordham University) and helping others with theirs as speaker, lecturer, teacher, and Professor at Dallas Baptist University. She is also an author of a book for parents that encourages reading and writing with children.

The Pittsburg, Texas native met her husband at church where he drew her name from a pool of 500 women to become her secret Valentine. More than 2 decades later, she and Keith have two daughters who are currently attending Oklahoma University.

As our Vice President of Admissions, many find their Halftime journey begins by interacting with Rhonda. Her nurturing and caring spirit helps people get enrolled into the Halftime Institute.

She is a 2013 Halftime Institute alumna and considers Psalm 86:11 her favorite verse: “Lord, tell me where you want me to go and I will go there. With all my heart, I will praise you.”

"I first read Bob Buford's book several years ago, but my Halftime really began when my youngest left for college. I knew then I didn't just want another job, but wanted to give back to God by making a significant impact for His kingdom.”

Read Rhonda’s Biz Journals article co-written with Bob Buford