Our kids emotions were on a rolling boil. We were headed to an amusement park! They were excited for the obvious reasons; I was stressed because I didn’t know where I was going. My wife was stressed because if we got lost, it might be several meals off the tailgate before I would be ready to ask for help. You don’t actually need a roller coaster to release adrenaline, the search for one will do the trick.
I had keyed the address into the GPS, but even I was asking, “Are we there yet?” We drove some more and then finally the unit announced, “You have arrived at your destination.” Really? There were no rides, no people, no popcorn, no nothing. Well, there were fields and fences as far as you could see, but there wasn’t any park. I was not amused!
On our journey through life, God has provided each believer with navigational help. The Holy Spirit abides with each child of God, to lead and to enable them to negotiate both hill and valley, curve or straightaway. The guidance of the Holy Spirit does what any good means of navigation should, it directs us to the desired destination using a course that does not imperil.
Failure in navigation does not lie with God’s provision, it lies with our propensity to go off-course. We choose left, when the Spirit led right. We keep going straight when the Spirit said turn. We prefer to slip back down the hill, while the Spirit directs us up and over the top.
In those kind of circumstances we need to re-calibrate our hearts and redirect our actions. Paul says it this way, “Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit (Gal 5:26 NIV).”
A time of reflective prayer that intentionally examines your recent course is one helpful spiritual discipline. Here is a way to structure that prayer time:
- Invite God to direct your reflection as you think back over recent events (e.g., for the day, for the week)
- Thank God for those circumstances that give evidence of his care and provision
- Confess those actions that the Spirit shows you to be “off-track”
- Ask God to help you by the Spirit to redirect your thoughts, actions and motives so that they align with his way
What other ways have you found helpful to keep in step with the guidance of the Holy Spirit?