Anyone who has walked with God for any length of time knows the importance of His leading along the Christian pilgrimage. It is very evident that without His guidance we will surely go astray; for even as He says in Jn. 15:5c, ‘… without Me you can do nothing.‘
In previous generations, God has always given His children the assurance of His presence and guidance if they submit themselves to Him. We have a number of places in Scripture where we see this. One example is when God told Abram to leave his country of Ur of the Chaldeans in Gen. 12:1 to go to a foreign land, and promised to show him the way; ‘And Jehovah said to Abram, Go out of your country, and from your kindred, and from your father’s house into a land that I will show you.‘
Other servants of God also had the benefit of experiencing His leading in their pilgrimages. In Deut. 31:1- 8 we see how God promised His presence and guidance to His people, on their journey to the promised land. He later specifically promised Moses who was in the lead to accompany them on their journey, in Ex. 33 14 : ‘And He said, My presence shall go with you, and I will give you rest.’ Moses, knowing that they could not do without God’s leading quickly responded and said; ‘….If Your presence does not go with me, do not carry us up from here…’
Another servant Of God, David, clearly understood this principle so that even after he sinned, in Ps. 32:8, we see him submitting to God in repentance after which God gives him a promise:
I will instruct you and teach you in the way which you should go; I will counsel you, My eye shall be on you.
It is always tragic for the person who presumes to know better than God and instead follows his own inclination other than His leading! An example of this can be seen in the case of King Saul whose presumption in overlooking God’s instructions through the prophet Samuel cost him the kingdom; in 1 Samuel 15:22-24 we read:
So Samuel said: “Has the Lord as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, As in obeying the voice of the Lord? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, And to heed than the fat of rams. For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, And stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because you have rejected the word of the Lord, He also has rejected you from being king.”
At times the situation at hand may appear so obvious that we find it unnecessary to ask for God’s mind! Joshua, the general who took over from Moses in leading the Israelites to the promised land, found himself in a situation like this in Josh 9:3 – 16. Instead of consulting God, he based a major national decision on outward appearances and ended up being deceived by an enemy nation:
‘…The Israelites accepted some food from them, but did not consult the LORD about it. Joshua made a treaty of friendship with the people of Gibeon and allowed them to live. The leaders of the community of Israel gave their solemn promise to keep the treaty. Three days after the treaty had been made, the Israelites learned that these people did indeed live nearby…’
Following and submitting to God’s leading in His prescribed manner takes believing that He has our best interests at heart. It is worth noting that God’s kingdom operates using faith as a currency. The writer to the Hebrews in 11:6 writes:
But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.
As God’s children; when we learn to trust Him completely, we will abandon ourselves in His loving arms, knowing that He will accomplish His perfect will for our lives and for the glory of His name.
Father, please help us to always remember that You have our best interests at heart. We therefore choose to totally submit to Your leading in all aspects of our lives. In Jesus’ name – Amen.