Our fall teaching series is on Spirit Led Living.
Don’t you love it when God’s Spirit reveals exactly what to do and how to do it! It’s an amazing thing to hear from God’s Spirit.
And here’s what I believe. God’s Spirit eagerly desires to lead, but we have to eagerly desire to be led. It’s found in – Isaiah 11:2.
- Intimacy – in-to-me-see
- Order – out of chaos
- Clarity – a clear understanding of what to do
- A Path – a clear course to follow
It’s possible to be ALIVE in the Spirit, FILLED with the Spirit, and yet rarely ever be LED by the Spirit?
This matter of being Spirit-Led is a huge issue!
The Apostle Paul wrote in Galatians 5:25;
NrIV: “Since we live by the Spirit, let us march in step with the Spirit.”
MSG “Since this is the kind of life we have chosen, the life of the Spirit, let us make sure that we do not just hold it as an idea in our heads or a sentiment in our hearts, but work out its implications in every detail of our lives.”
AMP “If we live by the [Holy] Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit. [If by the Holy Spirit we have our life in God, let us go forward walking in line, our conduct controlled by the Spirit.]”
We have to reprogram our mind to ask, “what does the Spirit want, what is the Spirit saying?”
And if we will do that, we’ll have the crystal clear direction that we need, but if we don’t then we are walking in our own understanding.
Truth be told, most of us “lean on our own understanding.”
We rely on the direction and advice of others and do not TRULY seek the Lord for His guidance with all of our heart.
King Saul was a confused, impetuous man who said he wanted God’s Spirit to lead him, but he rarely waited on God for direction and often ran off on his own limited understanding.
- This pattern cost King Saul and the nation of Israel a high cost.
1 Chronicles 10:13-14 “So Saul died for his unfaithfulness which he had committed against the Lord, because he did not keep the word of the Lord, and also because he consulted a medium for guidance. 14-But he did not inquire of the Lord; therefore [God] killed him, and turned the kingdom over to David the son of Jesse.”
When the Spirit of Understanding is operating then we get clarity out of chaos, focus out of confusion and light out of darkness.
#1 The Spirit of Understanding Helps Us Build a Stable Life
The Spirit of Understanding enables us to have that ‘aha’ moment when everything becomes very clear in our mind.
A sense of confidence enters our soul and we say to ourselves, now I know exactly what I must do.
It’s sort of like having a thick fog hanging in the air, and the wind blows the haze away, and in the distance you clearly see the direction you are to walk in.
God’s Spirit of counsel will give you the specific path to get you there.
Next weekend we’ll look at that dimension of God’s leading.
Out of the darkness and chaos God speaks, “let there be light!” He begins to bring order to the confusion of our life.
Understanding helps us to clearly see what needs to be done, and we ought never to make a move until God’s Spirit brings absolute clarity to the situation!
When we are led by the Spirit we make good decisions. And why is that, because our decisions are not based on our fickle emotions but they are based on the Spirit’s understanding.
We end up in deep trouble when we refuse to be led by Spirit. David wrote in Psalms 32:8-10;
- “I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will guide you with My eye. 9-Do not be like the horse or the mule, which have no understanding, which must be harnessed with bit and bridle, or else they will not come near you.”
Does God have to run after you? What will it take to get you to draw near God to consistently so that you may receive His wisdom and understanding?
Here’s what the Word of God promises. If you will seek out God’s understanding your life will become more stable and more established. It’s a fact!
The Bible has a collection of books called Wisdom literature; Job, Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, and Song of Solomon.
This would be a great study. Take those 5 books and look up the words wisdom, understanding and knowledge and see what you find.
Understanding brings stability. Let’s turn to the Book of Proverbs.
Proverbs 24:3-5 “Through wisdom a house is built, and by understanding it is established; 4-By knowledge the rooms are filled with all precious and pleasant riches. 5-A wise man is strong, yes, a man of knowledge increases strength.”
Proverbs 8:14 “I am understanding and I have strength.”
Proverbs 4:5-9 “Get wisdom! Get understanding! Do not forget, nor turn away from the words of my mouth. 6-Do not forsake her, and she will preserve you; love her, and she will keep you. 7-Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom. And in all your getting, get understanding. 8-Exalt her, and she will promote you; she will bring you honor, when you embrace her. 9-She will place on your head an ornament of grace; a crown of glory she will deliver to you.”
#2 The Spirit of Understanding Helps Us Make Good Decisions
It’s critical that when the darkness closes in around us we make good decisions because good decisions lead to stability.
I have discovered that when I’m wounded good decision making is very hard to do.
I am more likely to add to the chaos and the darkness of my life when my decisions are based on my emotions, especially when I’ve been deeply wounded by those I love.
Perhaps we find out our spouse is being unfaithful. Our impulse, driven by our damaged emotions, may tell us to retaliate and have an affair of our own. Let them feel the pain.
People are more susceptible to falling into marital unfaithfulness at a time like that than at any other time.
- Tell the story of young mom at DQ. God helped me see inside her heart and I spoke truth.
The moment of chaos and darkness is not the time for the Child of God to be led by the flesh.
It’s a critical time to call out to God for crystal clear direction and clarity. If we ask God what to do He will tell us.
About 10 years ago Dorene and I were going through a difficult time in our ministry. There was confusion. A wiser, old pastor told us, “In chaos don’t make a move. Everything is out of focus. The answer seems blurry. Wait on the Lord. Focus will come and when it does you will know exactly what to do. But you have to wait!
David knew about chaos and confusion. He knew the pain of broken relationships and enemies who sought his destruction.
David’s advice still works today. David advised us to be calm, to wait on God for clear understanding – Psalms 27:10-14, 37:3-9.
What often happens when we are wounded by others is that we react to the pain in our own understanding and actually create more confusion and add more darkness to the situation.
God’s Spirit is wise enough to give you crystal clear clarity as to what to do in every situation.
- Don’t let pain dictate your reaction.
- Let God’s Spirit of understanding direct your steps.
Mark it down. Decisions based on damaged emotions are almost always the wrong decision!
#3 The Spirit of Understanding Helps Only Those Who Seek It
God’s Spirit of understanding is available to all who seek it. If we have chaos and confusion still happening, we haven’t yet tapped into it.
God’s Spirit of understanding is available to all who ask.
James said in his book, “You have not because you ask not!”
In Solomon’s writings he made it seem that the Spirit of understanding is literally begging to be a part of our lives.
Proverbs 8:1-4 “Does not wisdom cry out, and understanding lift up her voice? 2-She takes her stand on the top of the high hill, beside the way, where the paths meet. 3-She cries out by the gates, at the entry of the city, at the entrance of the doors: 4-“To you, O men, I call, and my voice is to the sons of men. 17-I love those who love me, and those who seek me diligently will find me.”
Where do we find understanding? GET CLOSE TO GOD!
Draw near to Him and He will open the treasuries of wisdom and understanding.
Job asked the question in Job 28:12-14 “Where can wisdom be found? And where is the place of understanding? 13-Man does not know its value, nor is it found in the land of the living. 14-The deep says, ‘It is not in me’; and the sea says, ‘It is not with me.’”
Close: Colossians 1:9-13. (Screen)