Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. (Galatians 5:25 NIV)
When I was growing up I joined the Boys Brigade at my local Baptist church and we did lots of exciting things like play football or go camping. The one thing none of us in our group liked was the drill The marching around the hall to the drum and bugle. For some reason we just didnt take it seriously, and when we had to compete with other Boys Brigade groups in a marching contest it was a nightmare. We hadnt practised. We were out of time. We went left when we should have gone right. We were at ease when we should have been at attention. We walked into one another when we should have halted, and while it provided some light entertainment in the Corporal Jones mode, we were an utter shambles.
I can always remember a comment one of the officers made about us: “That lot were marching to a different drumbeat!”
As Christians it is important for us to march to a different drumbeat from the world around us. We have to keep in step with the Spirit, even if it means we are out of step with everyone else around us.
To me this implies two things: Dont run ahead of the Spirit, going off in a direction where the Spirit is not going or at a pace that the Spirt is not setting; and dont lag behind the Spirit, failing to go in the direction the Spirit is leading or at the pace he is setting.
One of the older translations renders Galatians 5:25 as If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit (KJV) which conjures up the idea of being side-by-side as you stroll together through life.
How can we ensure that we walking in step with the Spirit, at his drumbeat?
Our objective is to become sensitive to the Holy Spirit. Ask God to teach you to be sensitive to promptings from the Spirit that hes placed inside you. Then, believe that he will guide you through the decisions and details of your life.
As you learn to walk in the Spirit, God will never ask you to do anything that violates his Word. Promptings from the Holy Spirit will always line up with the Bible; however, they may not line up with your traditionalism or pre-conceived notions.
Take some time to jot down where you sense the Spirit prompting you. This will help you learn to be sensitive to the Spirit, but it will also strengthen your resolve to be obedient to Gods guidance as you see his constant, loving interest in the details of your life.
And what if you blow it? What if you misunderstand the Holy Spirits prompting or you disobey him?
Remember Gods grace!
He will pick you up so that you can continue your walk with him. Its a learning process, and God has sent the Holy Spirit to teach you how and when to march to a different drumbeat.
Lets listen to music and keep in step, for the Spirit is on the move.
Father, we do not want to live independent lives disconnected from you. Help us to hear the small still voice of the Spirt, and join him where he leads.
Have a good week walking to a different drumbeat with the Spirit.