Do you ever have those unidentified inner promptings? (Don’t worry; Swindoll hasn’t lost his marbles—at least, not yet!) I’m talking about when the Spirit of God urges your spirit in a very specific direction.
The book of Jude offers a wonderful example of the powerful prompting of the Holy Spirit:
Beloved, while I was making every effort to write you about our common salvation, I felt the necessity to write to you appealing that you contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all handed down to the saints. (Jude 3)
Jude started to write a letter to his fellow Christians about salvation, about the finished work of Christ on the cross. That was his original plan . . . until the Holy Spirit prompted him to do otherwise. “I felt the necessity to do so,” Jude admits.
I’ve underlined that phrase in my Bible: “I felt the necessity.”
That was nothing less than an inner prompting from the Spirit of God. Granted, Jude was inspired, and we’re not.
But God still prompts us to follow a certain direction. No audible voice. No image of Jesus in an enchilada. Nothing mystical or magical. But as you are moving along and trusting Him, you stay sensitive to the quiet yet all-important prompting of God through His Holy Spirit.
By doing so, you may well sense inner promptings that will spur thoughts, such as, I can’t seem to shake this idea. I wonder what the Lord is doing? Where could He be going with this?
Quiet and Solitude
As you mull over the thoughts, you may not be able to figure them out. Take time in quiet and solitude to evaluate the prompting.
Obviously, you know the Spirit of God will never contradict the Bible. In fact, the prompting often is a passage from Scripture.
Nothing wrong with planning. Nothing wrong with thinking it through. There’s everything right and wise about listing all the pros and cons. But stay sensitive to God’s leading. His plans may be different than yours. By the way, His are always better.
The mind of man plans his way,
But the LORD directs his steps. . . .
Man’s steps are ordained by the LORD,
How then can man understand his way? (Proverbs 16:9; 20:24)
I love that! When all is said and done, you’ll say,
Honestly, this direction didn’t come from me. It must have been from God.
Talk about mysterious! The longer I live the Christian life, the less I know about why He leads as He does.
But I do know that He leads.