“For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son” (Romans 8:29)
God has sent His Spirit to work inside our hearts and throughout our lives, for the specific purpose of making us more and more like Jesus in our character, our conversation, and our conduct. The Message puts this verse this way, “God knew what he was doing from the very beginning. He decided from the outset to shape the lives of those who love him along the same lines as the life of his Son.”
Thus, when God gives us a prompting by His Spirit and we follow it – we take one more step in the process becoming more and more like Jesus. But what if we make the wrong turn? Well, here’s the good news. Even then the Lord will use that mis-step to reroute our trip and bring us back on the right path.
This is what He means when He says, “All things work together for good unto those who love God and are called according to His purpose.” In other words, God uses all things, even our mis-steps, to help make us more and more like Jesus.
This in one of the great lessons we learn from John Bunyan’s classic work, “Pilgrim’s Progress.” When Pilgrim ventured off the path and landed in the Slough of Despair, or Doubting Castle, or Vanity Fair – the lessons learned always brought him back to the path leading to the Celestial City.
The same will be true for you and I, as we yield to being led by the Spirit. The key is to keep your Map in hand (i.e., your Bible), then look for and follow the signs that are posted along your journey’s way.
Bill Hybels, Pastor at Willow Creek Community Church said, “The most important moments in your life are not the big ones – they are the unguarded private moments, the hidden moments when God gives you a leading and you obey.”
So let me ask you a pointed question – how are you doing? Are you being prompted by God’s Spirit? And, more to the point, are you following His lead? If so, then you are experiencing peace – which is the first sign that is posted on our route.
We will talk more in detail about that tomorrow.