The proverbial school of wisdom teaches that warning signs of impending trouble come in degrees. First, there’s a sign that equals the effect of a thump on one’s head. If that isn’t heeded, which in most cases it isn’t, there’s a whack that’s enough to leave our heads spinning a bit. And if that doesn’t get our attention, the last and final sign might come in the form of a big ol’ boulder that’s about to land on top of us. The long and short of it is that Heavenly Father has woven warning signs throughout each of our lives. It’s truly amazing how He does this, because these warnings are tailor made to fit our unique and individual circumstances. If we’ll pay attention, they’ll help us navigate through some of life’s rocky terrain, so that we always come through with our well-being intact.
Philippians 4:8-9 The Message (MSG) tells us, “8-9 Summing it all up, friends, I’d say you’ll do best by filling your minds and meditating on things true, noble, reputable, authentic, compelling, gracious—the best, not the worst; the beautiful, not the ugly; things to praise, not things to curse. Put into practice what you learned from me, what you heard and saw and realized. Do that, and God, who makes everything work together, will work you into his most excellent harmonies.” God has made a very clear distinction between the things that bring Him glory, and the stuff that is just a waste of time. He tells us to keep our minds filled with thoughts, ideas, and imaginations that represent His nature; those things that are true, noble, beautiful, and excellent.
These verses greatly aid our discernment, because they tell us what’s on the mind of God. They show us how harmoniously He moves, and that we can do the same as we put on the mind of Christ. Philippians 1:17 (NLT) says, “Above all, you must live as citizens of heaven, conducting yourselves in a manner worthy of the Good News about Christ.” We’re citizens of heaven, and we’ve been commanded to act like it. God has called us out and set us apart to be different. This means that we ought to have an understanding about the place we call home, and we must also carry ourselves as true ambassadors of that heavenly place.
There’s no confusion, doubt, fear, darkness, bondage, or ignorance in heaven. It’s a place of love and light. We need to let this sink in the deep recesses of our inner sanctum. We’ve given far too much room to ambiguity, because ambiguity is safe for many people. It doesn’t require a fully persuaded, sold-out commitment, but there’s none of that wishy-washy business in our heavenly home.
In order for any person to discern properly, they must know the truth. They must be able to discern a thump from a light bump. When you don’t know the truth, you might think that something from the pit of hell is from Heavenly Father, or that a gift from heaven is dark and evil. God said in Hosea 4:6 that His people are destroyed because they lack knowledge; they reject it. This is how so many of us are tricked by satan, because we don’t know the Word well enough to recognize the difference between light and darkness.
Most of us have a lot going on. We’re pulled in a thousand different directions from day to day. God knows our grind, but we can by no means allow it to interfere with our commitment to carve out some time for our relationship with Him. James 4:8 (NLT) tells us, “Come close to God, and God will come close to you.” It is critically important that we begin the practice of spending quiet and quality time with God. It’s a matter of sitting peacefully and inviting the presence of the Holy Spirit into your space in the precious name of Jesus Christ.
The noise of our worlds can drown out His still voice and the peace He offers if we’re not careful. We’re not making the time for Heavenly Father that we should, and that’s why we mistake the thump as a bump, and miss those wake-up calls to tighten our walks in Christ. In Hebrews 4:12, God tells us that His Word is alive and powerful, that it’s so sharp that it divides the joints from marrow. He’s given us His Word so that we’ll be equally on point, and have razor sharp clarity to pump the breaks before the thump.
Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.
Scripture taken from The Message. Copyright © 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 2000, 2001, 2002. Used by permission of NavPress Publishing Group.
“A Thumb from a Bump” written by Fran, edited by PMB for Overcomingdomesticviolenceorg.wordpress.com. Copyright ©2021. All rights reserved. All done to the glory of God through Jesus Christ, our Lord!