Tuesday, March 02, 2010

The Whole Messy Guidance Thing Revisited

Ever had the experience of hearing someone say 'God guides by the Holy Spirit' as if that somehow settles matters? Only me then. Ah well.

Thing is, given the Christian doctrine of the Trinity (don't worry for now if you're not familiar), saying 'God guides by his Spirit' is a tautology. It is saying, because we believe the Holy Spirit is just as divine as God the Father or God the Son, that 'God guides by God.'

It doesn't take us any further forward.

Others say that it would be so much easier if we were back in the days of the Bible where God spoke so much more clearly. Depends which bit. Do you fancy the bit at the beginning of 1 Samuel where the word of the Lord was rare and there were not many visions? How about the time of the philosopher concluding all is useless and chasing after wind? How about the time when God clearly allowed Satan to kill Job's kids? Oh. Not those bits.

Even after a massive vision of a man beckoning to 'come on over to Macedonia' Luke records in Acts that the apostles 'concluded' that they had been called there. However powerful the word or vision the decision to act upon guidance, however slight, is still a human conclusion to be drawn. You know what? I reckon God cares far less about what you decide than your motive in deciding it in the first place and your attitude towards him in the decision you took.

Think there's a Mr Right out there for you? Of course there is. Pick someone and treat him like that. For worse, poorer and in sickness. Probably best to make sure, for the next few weeks at least, that he's not called Ashley but form is only temporary. Make your promises into truth.

Happiness is not having what you want; it's wanting what you have. In the absence of evidence to the contrary, act today as if God has put you exactly where you are, doing exactly what you are doing.

Bob Dylan, in one of his moments of Christian lucidity said, 'No-one does what's right; they just do what they want and then repent.' Guy had a point.

Guidance got you where you are today. If God wants you somewhere else he has ways.

Now. What's next?

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