Do I walk in the Spirit?Updated: 2012-09-09 11:02:00
I recently had a good friend visit me. Most of our conversations revolved around ideas or spiritual things, and eventually he asked an excellent question, "How do you know you are walking in the Spirit?"
This question set off an explosion of millions of little exclamation marks within my entire being. The world even seemed to momentarily stand still. Although I know I have surely wrestled with this question in the past, I had not put it into recent context, and all kinds of thoughts began to swim through my mind about what it means to walk in the Spirit. "What a question!" I exclaimed within my mind. "WOW!"
Fortunately, my grandfather is a phone call away, and this man usually has a very keen perspective on these kinds of things. He experienced the heart of the spiritual boom in the 1980s, and he has many fascinating stories to tell. Usually, I can ask a very complicated question and receive a very simple answer.
And so I asked him, "How do you know you are walking in the Spirit?"
He said, "It is very simple. You discern whether it is good and evil. Everyone has the ability to discern good and evil."
And with those short comments, everything began to fall into place. So often, I have tried to look at the situation logically. If I feel the Holy Spirit is steering me into a direction, I mentally break it down, "Is this logically good or evil?" But this is not what he meant.
He meant that you discern it by the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit will tell us what is good or evil. For example, Abraham and Isaac. Abraham did not have the Holy Spirit to guide him, but what would have been good logically? It most certainly was not logically good to sacrifice his son. Nevertheless, this course of action was spiritually good. Abraham was given direction from God, and he followed it, regardless of the logical standpoint. This is what we need to do.
Too often have I tried to determine, "Am I hearing God's voice or my own subconcious?" The reality is that God can speak to us either way. He can ensure a good outcome from either standpoint. Instead of asking if I am hearing God, I need to be asking, "Is the Holy Spirit telling me this is good or evil?"
Of course, some may say, "If I am told to go left or right, how do I know that is from God?" And once again, I must emphasize to look at the situation spiritually rather than logically. Logically, you cannot determine if going left or right is good or bad. However, the Holy Spirit knows, and the Holy Spirit can tell you which is good or bad. It is a spiritual discernment.
One final comment from my grandfather, "This is something to be developed. It does not happen overnight." Nevertheless, I plan to pursue this new dimension of living, and I expect great success.
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