“I am your servant; give me discernment that I may understand your statutes.” Psalm 119:125
Discernment is not always easily understood. Where to live? Where to go to school? Who to marry? Where to work? Who to mentor or who to be mentored by? What to purchase? Where to join a church? What doctor to visit or medicine to take? How to parent? How to grow a healthy marriage? However, the Lord wants His children to understand His ways. Answers from the Almighty are the best, because they align us with His productive plan.
Thus, we take time to first understand the wisest course of action, so we don’t have to redo a wrong result. Listening to the Lord’s voice and understanding His choice brings calm and confidence to our prayerful posture. It’s when we run ahead of Jesus that we run an unnecessary risk of reacting in the flesh. Indeed, we learn to wait on understanding, when we remember the past pain of pushing ahead in ignorance. Lack of discernment causes us to scratch our head, but it also guides our heart in humble dependence on Jesus.
“Israel’s watchmen are blind, they all lack knowledge; they are all mute dogs, they cannot bark; they lie around and dream, they love to sleep. They are dogs with mighty appetites; they never have enough. They are shepherds who lack understanding; they all turn to their own way, they seek their own gain.” Isaiah 56:10
Furthermore, understanding from above requires intentional learning below. You grow in discernment with disciplined study of Holy Scripture and observing the wise choices of holy people. Understanding Christ’s ways is a work of grace in your heart over a lifetime. It is not like a light switch that one day is turned on—it is more like running a race for the first time and observing your unique surroundings at each mile marker. Your discernment grows as you determine to listen to the Lord and to those He is blessing.
You are wise to learn from your spouse who sees a situation with unnecessary risks. They have a sense that it is wise to wait before you go into debt, or spend money that maybe you can afford, but which they do not have a peace about the expense. Wisdom asks the Lord what He thinks, and then listens for understanding and discernment. Comprehension comes as much from preparing your heart with humility, as educating your mind with truth.
Lastly, obey what you sense the Spirit is leading you to do, even when you don’t completely understand. Your heavenly Father wants you to trust Him through an unsure process and He may later reward your obedience with understanding in retrospect. Jesus understands that your faith grows stronger when you feel weak. So, seek the Lord first and discernment second. Walk with Christ, and comprehension will come in His timing.
“He has filled him with the Spirit of God, with wisdom, with understanding, with knowledge and with all kinds of skills.” Exodus 35:31
Prayer: Lord, I need a full heart of faith, as my head needs clarity in where you are taking me.
Related Readings: 1 Chronicles 22:12; Job 12:13; Ecclesiastes 11:5; 1 Corinthians 2:12
Post/Tweet today: When we run ahead of Jesus we run unnecessary risks. #patience #risk