To genuinely undertake the very best of life it is incumbent on us to think differently (than our default thinking) and to investigate two divine tasks—one as a precursor and director of focus or effort, and the other how we will need to operate day to day.
These divine tasks are, 1) to design ‘policies’ for living, and 2) to choose to be led by the Holy Spirit in all we do.
Designing Policies for Living
We all need standards or values with which to live our lives by—many of these are chosen for us via our upbringings. But, many we also choose. These are all previously agreed rules of engagement in life and they’re simply backed up in self discipline—making them operant. Being previously agreed we can be held accountable to them, personally and interpersonally.
The task for us is simply to take the necessary time out to explore what ‘policies’ we’ll need particularly (that will suit our needs presently and for growth into the future) and set up living strategies and actions for engagement so we can actually achieve these policies.
Practically, it relates to our diet disciplines, how much exercise we’ll get and how, our devotional life and how that takes place, our learning disciplines etc. Of course, as our lives progress these policies morph with our changing needs. It is hence a very vital thing that solid values always underpin this process.
Be Led by the Holy Spirit
This alone is a great thing to do, but without the pre-defined rules of engagement established, i.e. our policies for living, there’s the risk of falling short and burning people, including ourselves.
We must seek the continual Presence of the living God in us to achieve this i.e. to know, and be aware, of his Presence and momentary calling. This ‘connection’ is developed and maintained over time.
This is about abiding in God’s will, as it is known, in the situation—however it presents. It’s the Spiritual intuition and alignment with God beyond the pull of our own desires.
Putting the Two Together
If we value our role as agents of God highly enough we’ll consider both these tasks critical in our overall success. They’ll drive how we’ll engage with the world, both in the way we prepare and in the way we’ll act.
Both these tasks together will ensure that as much of the pre-thought has taken place freeing up the conscious mind for ‘listening’ to the Spirit of God.
It is especially good that we fix the processes involved in the first task so we’re self disciplined and self controlled. Where we struggle to achieve these two ends we’ll always struggle to live a fervent, effective and functional spirituality.
Yet, if we achieve the first task but don’t develop the Spiritual acuity necessary to be led by the Holy Spirit, i.e. the ability to listen to God and heed him, we’ll never go onto maturity with the Lord.
This way we can see that the first task is foundational—and a prerequisite—for the second. But the second is what takes us onward in our journey through life with God.
© 2010 S. J. Wickham.