"Ask the Lord for discernment to guide us through life" by: Caleb Gibson

   In life there are things that are black and white. We all have a conscious that tells us when we do something wrong such as parking in a handicap spot when you aren’t handicapped or coughing too close to someone. 
   Other things are grey, some examples are clothing, dating, movies, and music. 
   A grey area is where the Bible does not take a clear dogmatic stance on a subject. In these, we must use Godly discernment. 
   Discernment helps free us from legalism, make wise decisions, and hear God’s voice.
One definition of legalism is, “the pressure of personal preferences that we impose on others as moral mandates from God.” 
   How do we know if something is from God? We go to His Word. Hebrews 5:13-14 tells us, “For everyone who partakes only of milk is not accustomed to the word of righteousness, for he is an infant. 
   “But solid food is for the mature, who because of practice have their senses trained to discern good and evil.” 
   The book of Hebrews tells us the word of righteousness causes us to grow and mature. What is righteousness? It is a gift from God (Romans 5:17). 
   The second way that discernment can help us is when we need to make a decision. 
   When we think about food, it can be easy to make a quick choice when we are at the store. We pick up an unhealthy snack or meal and we bring it home. Then once that meal is at the house, we feel guilty if we do not eat it because to not do that would be a waste of finances. 
   So, we end up eating foods that we made a quick choice on. Instead, plan meals out and shop slower and smarter. 
   The third area that discernment can help us is to hear God’s voice better.
We may ask, “When should I speak and when should I be silent?” 
   This is when we need discernment. The Apostle John once said, “Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world.” (1 John 4:1). 
   We must test everything that we hear. We do this by returning to the Scriptures. In the chapter before this, John also said, “Beloved, if our heart does not condemn us, we have confidence before God” (John 3:21). Sometimes, we may try to discern God’s voice and feel condemnation. 
   When it comes to the Holy Spirit, I think it can be easy for us have a negative idea of the ministry of the Holy Spirit. 
   When we feel guilty it is not God, it is our own heart. Allow God to speak to you and remove the condemnation. 
   In Christ there is, “no condemnations” (Romans 8:1). May we all ask the Lord to give us more discernment. 
   Psalms 119:124-125 tells us, “Deal with your servant according to your love and teach me your decrees. I am your servant; give me discernment that I may understand your statutes.” (NIV).

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