As we continue talking about the calling God gives us, today we are talking about being led by the Holy Spirit. Not only are we called by the Holy Spirit, but we are also led by the Spirit if we allow Him to lead us. Romans 8:14 says, “For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.” (KJV) We must be Born-Again to be led by the Holy Spirit.
God doesn’t force us to follow Him, but He does lead us. Just as a shepherd leads his sheep, God’s Spirit leads us. J. Vernon McGee explains it this way in his commentary on Romans, “God does not drive His sheep; He leads them. When our Lord told of the safety and security of the sheep, He made it clear that they were not forced into the will of His hand and that of the Father. He said, ‘My sheep hear my voice, and I know them…and they follow me’ (John 10:27). They are the ones who are safe and secure; they follow Him. They are led by the Spirit of God. They hear His voice because they have a new nature, and they follow Him.” To be led by His Spirit we must be listening to His Voice. We must know Him intimately to recognize His Voice. Just as sheep know their shepherd’s voice when he calls them, we are to know the voice of the Holy Spirit and follow where He leads. The key, I think, is listening to and allowing the Holy Spirit to lead us. Sometimes we may think we are allowing the Holy Spirit to lead us when, in reality, we are following our own pathway.
He can talk to us personally through prayer, Bible study, Bible teaching and preaching, and through the wise counsel of others. God can speak to us through these avenues and even more than these. It is our responsibility to be listening. Do we allow daily busyness and events to get in the way of taking the time to listen to Him? Are we so consumed with all that’s going on around us that we have no time, or is the world just too loud for us to hear Him?
The Holy Spirit will never lead you into something that goes against God’s Will or His Word. When we are confused as to whether what we hear and sense is coming from the Holy Spirit, we can ask God to make it clearer. There’s nothing wrong with asking for a fleece to be certain what we think we are hearing is coming from Him.
The Holy Spirit leads us in making decisions, “I will instruct you and teach you in the way which you should go; I will counsel you with My eye upon you.” (Psalm 32:8 NASB) He leads us by giving us wise counsel, “With Your counsel You will guide me, And afterward receive me to glory.” (Psalm 73:24 NASB) The Holy Spirit leads us quietly, “And your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, ‘This is the way, walk in it,’ when you turn to the right or when you turn to the left.” (Isaiah 30:21 ESV) Remember when Elijah was running from Jezebel? Elijah was hiding out because she wanted to kill him. God told Elijah to go to a mountain. As he was standing there, a great wind, an earthquake, and a fire all came before him, but God wasn’t in those things, He was in the still, small voice that came afterward. (1 King 19) Elijah was so in tune with God that he heard God’s voice, and it was so powerful, Elijah wrapped his face in his mantle, and then God instructed him on what he was to do. We should be like Elijah, so close to God that we can hear when He is speaking to us, and then follow His guidance.
As we walk this walk with God, we must be sensitive to His leading. When He calls us to do something, we must allow Him to lead us on that path to accomplish what He wants to accomplish in our lives. Thank God we are led by His Holy Spirit!