Finding Your Direction

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"O Lord, I know that the way of man is not in himself: it is not in man that walketh to direct his steps" (Jeremiah 10:23).
The following article will give you some spiritual principles to help you find direction for your life.

Be born of the Spirit

    Apart from God, one can not find true meaning or direction for his life.  Man is simply subject to the opinions of others.  However, God  has a plan for every person.  However, to receive that plan, one must be born of the Spirit of God (John 3:1-8).  The plan can only be discerned spiritually (I Corinthians 2:10-16).  If you have not experienced the new spiritual birth, please contact me and I will be glad to share with you how God can make you a new spiritual person today.

Know the meaning of your name

    God, in His sovereignty, has not only created each of us, but He has also named us through the authority of our parents.  The Bible is our example: the name "Abraham" means "father of many".  He became the father of the nation of Israel.  The name "Moses" means "to draw out".  He delivered the Israelites from Egypt in the exodus.  The name "Barnabas" means "an encourager".  He was an encourager.  What does your name mean?  God has a purpose in your name.  Names often have a negative and a positive meaning.  Look for the positive one.  A good baby name book often is a help if your name is not in Scripture.

Know your spiritual gifts

    The spiritual gifts that are found in Romans 12:4-8 are often called the motivational gifts because they are what move us to act.  They are: prophecy, ministry, teaching, exhortation, giving, ruling, and mercy.  An individual may exhibit characteristics of several of these, but one or two will stand out as being the dominate ones.  Each gift has both strengths and weaknesses.  God will usually lead someone to work in the area of the spiritual gifts that he as received from God.

Know that you can hear God's voice

    First, one needs to have assurance that he is a child of God.  The book of I John was written to encourage Believers to know that they are children of God.  "These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe  on the name of the Son of God" (I John 5:13).  Second, one needs to know that they can hear and obey God's voice. "My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me" (John 10:27)  Every Believer hs the spiritual capacity to hear God's voice.  God also knows our weaknesses as well our strengths; therefore, He will enable us to do what He desires for us to do.  We can hear, and we can obey His leading.

Know that you can receive forgiveness and cleansing for all your sins

    The enemy often keeps a Believer from finding direction for his life through deception and guilt.  The accuser says, "You can't find God's direction for your life.  After all, look at all the bad things that you have done."  Therefore, we need to know that when we confess our sins, that God both forgives us and cleanses us of all unrighteousness (I John 1:9).  We are then free to pursue God's direction for our lives.  Even if we fall down, God is still willing and ready to help us up again (Psalm 37:23-24).

Be baptized and filled with the Holy Spirit

    We must understand that the Holy Spirit is to become the personal guide for the Believer (Romans 8:14).  The Holy Spirit is to guide us into all truth (John 16:13).  The question is, "Have you received the Holy Spirit as your guide since you have become a Believer?" (Acts 19:2).  If not, you can receive the fulness of the Holy Spirit by asking the Father (Luke 11:1-13).  He is ready to give to you the good gift of the Holy Spirit.  Once we have been immersed in the Holy Spirit, we are to be daily filled with the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 5:18).  Then we are to walk by the Spirit (Galatians 5:16, 18, 25).

Be committed to obey before you ask for direction

    Do you really believe that God has a plan for your life?  (Psalm 37:23).  Do you really believe that God's plan is the best plan? (Romans 8:28).  We should understand, in one sense, that plan "A" is the only plan.  There is not a plan "B".  This is the reason that we must die to self before we can follow the Spirit. "And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me"(Luke 9:23).  Then we are ready to do as Samuel did.  "And the LORD came, and stood, and called as at other times, Samuel, Samuel.  Then Samuel answered, Speak; for thy servant heareth" (I Samuel 3:10).  Samuel committed himself to be a servant of God before God gave him direction.

Have a fear of God coupled with a trust in God

    "The secret of the LORD is with them that fear him; and he will shew them his covenant" (Psalm 25:14).  A fear of God is knowing that God will discipline us any time and every time we disobey Him.  "The fear of the LORD is to hate evil . . . ." (Proverbs 8:13).  "The Fear of the LORD is the instruction of wisdom; and before honour is humility" (Proverbs 15:33).  Wisdom is the ability to see from God's perspective.  If we can trust God to discipline us when we do wrong, then we can also trust Him to give us direction to do what is right.  "Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.  In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths"(Proverbs 3:5-6).

Believe that God will enable you to do what He asks

    It would be "unfair" for God to ask us to do something that He would not give us the ability to do.  God will always enable us to do right no matter how difficult the situation (I Corinthians 10:13).  God is in control.  "For promotion cometh neither from the east, nor from the west, nor from the south. But God is the judge: he putteth down one, and setteth up another" (Psalm 75:6-7).  He will carry out His plan in our lives.  "The LORD will perfect that which concerneth me: thy mercy, O LORD, endureth for ever: forsake not the work of thine own hands" (Psalm 138:8).  Paul also declared, "I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me" (Philippians 4:13).

 Test the spirits

    We as Believers have the capacity to hear both the Holy Spirit and evil spirits speak to us.  Actually, the Christian will hear the inner voice of self, the voice of the Holy Spirit, and the voice of the enemy.  How do we know when God is speaking to us or we are hearing another voice?  We question the voice!  First, does the spirit confess the Lordship of Jesus? (I Corinthians 12:3).  Second, does the spirit confess that Jesus Christ came in the flesh? (I John 4:1-4).  Another way to check is to ask the natural authorities (parents, pastor, teacher, boss, husband, and governmental authorities) which rule over you (Hebrews 13:17).  Remember that God works through the authorities over us.  Next, you may check with a Christian counselor or counselors (Proverbs 11:14).  You can also check with your conscience (I Timothy 1:5, 2:19, 3:9).  Often there is something about the voice that just does not seem quite right.  Next, you should check with your spouse (if married).  We all have blind spots which those who are close to us can easily recognize.  The wife is the help meet, while the husband is the covering (Genesis 2:18, I Corinthians 11:3).  Last, and most important, check with the Word of God.  If what is said is contrary to the Word, reject it.

Be sure that your spirit is involved

    We are not to live by the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, or the pride of life (I John 2:16-17).  We are not to live by our intellect, our will power, or our emotions.  We are to follow after the spirit! "But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness to him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.  But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, ye he himself is judged of no man"(I Corinthians 14:15).  Usually we may consider what is the opposite to our "natural" inclinations.

Ask God to confirm what you have heard

    We should understand that we can overdo this; however, it is not wrong to stop and ask God to confirm what you have heard.  Gideon did this several times, and God heard his prayers (Judges 6:36-40).  The Word says that something is to be established in the mouth of two or three witnesses (Deuteronomy 17:6, II Corinthians 13:1).  Furthermore, a confirmation by God helps build our faith and strengthens us to do the work that God has set before us.

Understand that the Holy Spirit both leads and drives

    Sometimes, the Holy Spirit will gently lead us along, even going before us each step of the way.  We are just encouraged to follow His leading.  At other times, the Holy Spirit will prod us in the back.  We are almost compelled to do what He directs.  Jesus was both led by the Spirit and driven by the Spirit (Matthew 4:1, Mark 1:12).  For sometime I have been praying about preparing a series of teaching.  The Holy Spirit has been leading me in my thoughts.  However, this morning the Holy Spirit began to prod me into outlining the series.  In a short time, I was able to outline a number of classes.  God is good.

Understand that there are some things to avoid

    First, we are to avoid pressured decisions (Proverbs 29:20).  Second, we are to avoid partnership because there is no head (Proverbs 6:1-5).  Third, we are to avoid shady decision (Song of Solomon 2:15).  Fourth, we are to avoid decisions that bring harm or hurts to others (II Corinthians 6:3).  Fifth, we are to avoid "you owe me" decisions (Romans 13:8).  Sixth, we are to avoid "something for nothing" schemes (I Chronicles 21:24).

Rely upon past experience in hearing God's voice

    Over a period of time and through experience, the sheep learns to discern the voice of the Shepherd (John 10:14)  "The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.  He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters. He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake.  Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me: thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.  Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.  Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever" (Psalm 23:1-6).  Amen.

For prayer or additional help please contact me through Whole Person Counseling.

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