David wrote in Psalm 31:1, “In Thee, O Lord, do I put my trust…” I have come to understand that the trust he is talking about is measured not only by the warm feeling we get as we sing hymns in church on Sunday, but also by the choices we make throughout the week. These choices and how we will make them are greatly determined by the inner posture of our hearts.
A little prayer I pray sometimes is just two words: “Abba, Father.” To understand what these words mean, think of a little child in his father’s arms. That child is not afraid that his father might drop him. He is totally secure in his father’s arms.
“And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father.” (Galatians 4:6)
In prayer, I will sometimes spend time just focusing on the Lord and who He is as I allow trust to settle in my heart. Hebrews 11:6 says that he who comes to God must believe that “He is” and that “He is a rewarder” of those who sincerely seek Him. As I hold these words in my thoughts, I believe into these words, and allow them to sink into my innermost being.
“But without faith it is impossible to please Him: for he that cometh to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him.” (Hebrews 11:6)
Another verse, Proverbs 8:17, tells us that God loves those who love Him. As I pray, I believe into that love. This verse also tells us that those who seek Him, find Him. In earnest desire I turn towards the Lord; I believe into these words that God is a God who loves me and who I can know. I can find His thoughts; I can know His will and His direction in my life.
“I love them that love Me; and those that seek Me early shall find Me.” (Proverbs 8:17)
Divine Guidance: A Continual Lifestyle of Yielding to the Lord
Divine guidance is not just something where today I decide to ask the Lord something and have Him answer me. It is a continual lifestyle where, as I am yielding myself to the Lord, I am coming to know Him and His ways, and it is easier and easier for me to recognize the nudges of the Holy Spirit, first in my daily life, then in bigger decisions.
“And the LORD shall guide thee continually…” (Isaiah 58:11)
I remember years ago the bank I used kept their doors locked because of the neighborhood. When I approached, they would unlock one door so I could go into the entry, and then unlock a second door, letting me into the bank. I would then slide my deposit through a tiny slot, just big enough for the money to fit through, to the teller sitting behind bullet proof glass. Then they would let me out, one door at a time, the same way they let me in.
One particular day, I decided I really did not want to go to that bank. I decided I would much rather enjoy a pleasant ride while I listened to some nice worship music, so drove to a bank some distance away that did not lock their doors and gave lollipops to their customers.
It was a beautiful, sunny day, and I was anticipating taking that ride. But as I was preparing to go, I felt a check from the Holy Spirit. That check caused me to understand I was to go to my own bank, the one that I always went to that was closer to my home. I did not understand, but I obeyed.
Later that day, I heard on the news that there was a random shooting which took place at a stop light on the very road I would have been driving on, right about the same time I would have been driving by, had I gone to the bank that gave lollipops. The Lord spoke to me in that moment, “There is no safer place to be than in the center of God’s will.” This understanding has brought me great peace in many situations since, as I have remembered the Lord’s words to me. I am so glad I sensed and heeded that check of the Holy Spirit!
Obedience comes from a lifestyle of becoming sensitive to the Lord and His presence through time spent with Him, and the practice of obeying Him. I have learned from the times I did not obey as well as from the times that I did. Both times I was hearing! Platforms of faith were built, and each time afterward I was quicker to trust.
I remember a time I was in Ghana and the Lord told me to go sit under a particular tree at a particular time. I obeyed, and exactly what the Lord showed me would happen, happened, and so much more! A door of ministry opened to many churches as I went from village to village. How thankful I was that I had gone and sat under the tree as the Lord had directed me! There are relationships I treasure today that came from that one act of obedience.
Scripture tells us we are not to be as a mule who has to be dragged in the right direction. Instead, we are to become so yielded to the Lord so that He can guide us with His eye.
“Be ye not as the horse, or as the mule, which have no understanding: whose mouth must be held in with bit and bridle, lest they come near unto thee.” (Psalm 32:9)
Have you ever had a relationship like that with someone? There is such a level of intimacy that you can tell just by looking at their eyes what they want, what they are thinking and how they feel. This is the level of relationship that the Lord desires us to have with Him, where that inner knowing of the Lord begins to govern our lives, guiding us in the choices we make.
“I will instruct thee and teach thee in the way which thou shalt go: I will guide thee with Mine eye.” (Psalm 32:8)
Very clearly, Scripture is a primary way the Lord leads us, giving us instruction, wisdom and direction through His Word. “Thy Word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path” (Psalm 119:105).
The peace of God is to govern our lives. There may be pros and cons and some unsettled feelings during a time of transition, yet there is an underlying peace which surpasses all understanding that we learn to recognize as we walk with the Lord (Colossians 3:15; Philippians 4:7).
The fact that we encounter trouble does not mean we are in the Lord’s will or not in the Lord’s will, for in this world we will have problems.
“These things I have spoken unto you, that in Me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33)
What Is the “Good” He Is Working in Our Lives?
While not everything is good that happens in our lives, God works all things together for the good of those who love Him.
“And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose.” (Romans 8:28)
That “good” is the formation of Christ in us. Trouble becomes a servant when we learn to respond rightly in the Lord’s hands.
“For whom He did foreknow, He also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren.” (Romans 8:29)
Scripture makes it clear that integrity is to guide the decisions we make. “The integrity of the upright shall guide them…” (Proverbs 11:3)
Lean Not on Your Own Understanding
In good times and in hard times the Lord has promised to guide His people continually. It is not just in difficult situations, but also in those things we think we understand that we need His direction in. Notice the word “all” in the following verse:
“Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy paths.” (Proverbs 3:5-6)
I remember learning about a dream Hattie Hammond had once. She shared that in her dream, someone brought her a complicated piece of music. As she looked at the complexity of it, she cried out, “Oh God, help me!” She put her fingers to the keys, and a beautiful melody came. Then they brought an easy piece of music, one she was very familiar with. “I can do that,” she thought to herself. As she confidently started to play, the discord was so bad it woke her up! The Lord showed her it was not just in the complicated things but also in the simple things that she needed His help.
We may not always understand everything that happens. We may not always know how things are going to end up, but we can understand that God loves us. He has a plan for our lives! He is all knowing and all powerful. He is present; He is not just the God of yesterday or of tomorrow – He is the God of today. And He is a rewarder of those who seek Him.
As we walk in integrity, as we apply His Word in our lives, as we acknowledge our dependence and our need to hear from Him, there is a rest we come into, knowing that as we stand in simple faith today, tomorrow is also in His hands.
The important thing is that today we are now standing in faith and trust in the place He has us. As we do this day by day, we grow into a poise of spirit that will continue to trust the Lord, whenever and however He moves in our lives, no matter how big or how small our situations might be.
“Abba, Father!” These words may be, at times, the only words we have, but they are a powerful prayer, one that positions us to rely on our Father. This cry enables us to pray words not limited by our own thoughts, opinions or understanding, and to pray into the greatness of who God is and His plan for us.
If you would like, please join me as I pray this Scripture: “Cause me to hear Thy loving kindness in the morning; for in Thee do I trust: cause me to know the way wherein I should walk; for I lift up my soul unto Thee” (Psalm 143:8).
Nancy Taylor Tate serves in Parousia Ministries, carrying the vision passed on from her father, Wade Taylor. In addition, she has established Parousia Ministries House of Prayer, hosts Parousia Ministries gatherings, and travels from time to time to speak and pray with others. Her background as an administrator, a pastor, teacher, and missionary has prepared her for what the Lord is doing today. Nancy’s special gift of relating to and loving people stems from her own love for Jesus and His Kingdom. Her spiritual life messages flow into the hearts and spirits of those to whom she ministers. Nancy has an expectation for visitation and carries a prophetic word that speaks into that which the Lord is doing today. For spiritual life teachings and to learn more about the vision of Parousia Ministries House of Prayer, please visit www.wadetaylor.org.