How many times have you heard that statement, only to next hear something totally unscriptural come out of the mouth of the speaker?
Normally, you'd only hear a Christian make the statement they were being "led of the Lord". It's not standard fare in a non-believer's vernacular. So, your first thought is "this is going to be something scriptural." But so often it isn't, because even Christians sometimes mistake their own voice, (been there, done that) or worse yet, the enemy's voice, for that of the Almighty.
The enemy can sound beautiful. That's his pleasure. The enemy can be convincing. That's his job.
In "Ian's Song" Mike Morgan feels "led of the Lord" to go to Houston and minister to the down and out. He's so sure that's God's plan for his life he doesn't notice the obvious clues God's throwing in his path.
"You a preacher? You sure don't look like no preacher I ever seen."
Mike stifled another laugh. He's an outspoken old rascal. "Well, I'm not actually a preacher yet. Just graduated. But I've got the call, and I think the Lord would have me in Houston. Just trying to follow His lead, and that's what I'm hearing from Him right now." Mike shrugged his shoulders. "He doesn't always make Himself real clear."
The old man took a long swig from his coffee cup, stood up, and threw some change on the table. He picked up a dirty cowboy hat from the seat, jammed it on his head, and turned to go. He paused at Mike's booth. "Maybe you just ain't listenin' real clear."
Speaking from my own experience, I've found if I get a word from the Lord, I'll get a confirmation from another godly source. Without that confirmation, I'd be very cautious.
Rule of thumb: Does the word you've received line up with God's word?
God has given us a lot of clues as to what He loves and what He doesn't approve of. There is the obvious yardstick by which to measure: the Ten Commandments. Is your word from Him in alignment with them?
And there are seven things listed in Proverbs that God hates: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that run rapidly to evil, a false witness who utters lies, and one who spreads strife among the brothers (and sisters - my words).
He's got many more. Sometimes it's necessary to do some research into His likes and dislikes. Because you can bet your boots, He's not going to lead you to do something that's not in line with His teaching.
I knew a young man who said the Lord was leading him to build a church. In a specific place. He bought the land and accepted building funds. Then one day he said the Lord was leading him in a different direction and the church plan was abandoned. He probably returned the funds. I don't know. And that's not the point. I just have to wonder . . . did he hear from the Lord. Or had he heard from himself? God's not as quick to change His mind as mortal man.
The other day, during my "God" time, He directed my mind to integrity. My desire is to be a person of integrity, according to His word. A person of integrity does not lie, steal, cheat, or be unfaithful. Wow. Integrity covers a lot of territory.
A person of integrity doesn't break a promise. If the promise was accepted and believed because of your declaration of faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and you renege . . . ooh, travel that road at your own peril.
While I was delving into this subject, He dropped another word into my heart. Compassion. Whoa. If you have integrity and compassion, looks like you 'bout got all bases covered.
You know, with God there are no coincidences. So, I can only believe He was leading me directly into my next discovery—my new favorite scripture. Over coffee, I picked up the morning paper. Our daily newspaper prints a verse of scripture in each issue. You'll never guess what the verse was that day.
Micah 6:8; This is what the Lord requires of thee. To do justly, love mercy and walk humbly with thy God.
To do justly . . . integrity. Love mercy . . . compassion. The same words He'd given me earlier.
Are you being led by the Lord? Have you completed your last assignment from him? Kept all your promises? Does your plan line up with all of His teachings? Are they just? Are they merciful to all concerned?
I have no desire for renown, if not for integrity. Nor remembrance, if not for compassion. For it's by these two qualities alone that mankind has its worth. LWW