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Categorized | From the Pulpit

Discernment? Apply now!

Pastor Thomas K. Schmidt 

Solon Center Wesleyan Church

15671 Algoma Ave NE, Cedar Springs

Discernment is a necessary principle to apply to our lives in these days. The news has exploded with people taking negative action. Action that is demoralizing and degrading. Protesting is not necessarily a negative action but when protests are acts of disgrace and not honoring to God, they begin a downward spiral of disobedience, destruction and demoralization.

Discernment is an aspect of spiritual growth. All of us should be on the journey of spiritual growth. Spiritual growth can only take place when we have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.

Spiritual growth comes about by Surrender to God.  Surrender is an act of obedience which seeks God’s will for our life. It is saying “yes” to God as the Holy Spirit purposely provides opportunities to follow God’s plan for us individually.

Spiritual growth is application of God’s Word in a personal way.  It is the application of prayer, listening to God to act according to His plan.

Spiritual growth is vision. Vision to be enlightened to the needs of others. Vision to see that a difference can be made. Vision of light penetrating darkness.

Spiritual growth is evidenced by engagement. Engagement of not only seeing the needs of others but taking action so that all people are honored as God’s creation.

The Apostle Paul calls us to a spiritual growth that includes discernment in our daily walk with God. To the people of Philippi Paul declared And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ—to the glory and praise of God” Philippians 1:9-11 (NIV).

Discernment needs to be pursued.  

My mother lives in another state and when traveling to visit her there are moments while traveling long distances the hunger pangs get my attention and a decision is made to seek out a restaurant to satisfy the desires of my stomach.  

Discernment is stopping to recognize a need or allowing the Holy Spirit to open our minds eye to action that is necessary to follow.

We can actively practice discernment by asking questions: “Does this honor God?” “Will God be pleased with my actions?” “What can I do that will help and not create more conflict?” Discernment will cause a rise of perception much like active yeast activates the ingredients in bread to rise.

Also, discernment that is pursued and practiced will be evidenced in how we perform obediently to the prompting of the Holy Spirit. The desires of evil are to distract us to be self-satisfied, self-centered, and self-gratified. A continual surrender to God will keep a focus on His will and His way which prepares our spiritual soil for growing truth and discerning right from wrong.

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