Since the study was actually written by my pastor, I considered the source... B. is a pretty visual guy. One for whom a picture is certainly worth a thousand words. He loves finding the right image, the word picture, the story that encapsulates his point. He loves fine arts and is a big movie buff. He's also a master of PowerPoint.
Yet as I read through the study I realized this was more than just a personality thing - that B. is probably right. Hearing from God takes not just the form of verbal, auditory transmission - words - but can come any number of other ways as well. The Scriptures DO talk about God speaking. (e.g., "This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased." Matthew 3:17, 17:5, 2 Peter 1:17.) But he also speaks through image after image, drama, music - each one of our senses, in fact - and all kinds of dreams and visions.
God speaks to us more often than not by stirring up a feeling and/or drawing or showing us a picture.
And so it is today. You may ask God a question, but more likely than not his answer comes through a vision, a picture, an emotion, or the persistent thought of a person, phrase, or concept that seems to be from God.
"In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams." Acts 2:17