Gut checks are those key moments when we sense a slight or strong leading in the discernible whisper of God.
Exodus 33:7, 9-9, 11 NIV Now Moses used to take a tent and pitch it outside the camp some distance away, calling it the “tent of meeting.” Anyone inquiring of the Lord would go to the tent of meeting outside the camp. As Moses went into the tent, the pillar of cloud would come down and stay at the entrance, while the Lord spoke with Moses. The Lord would speak to Moses face to face, as one speaks to a friend. Then Moses would return to the camp, but his young aide Joshua son of Nun did not leave the tent.
Time in the tent of meeting and an awareness and obedience to the Word of God help me discern His way, but there are also times when my gut says go or no—and I have learned to listen to those promptings.
I’ve sensed gut checks when I’ve rushed to return a phone call without praying about my response, dialing all but the last digit before hanging up and yielding to the Holy Spirit’s conviction to wait and pray it through.
I’ve felt gut checks when considering job offers that would require relocating my family and leaving a comfortable position and community.
I sensed gut checks in my position as an Associate Pastor where we disagree and submitting to him is not a make or break issue.
I believe that God sometimes leads us through gut checks and we shouldn't ignore them. God’s Word affirms this kind of leading, too. It says we will hear a voice behind us telling us which way to go,
Isaiah 30:21 NIV Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, “This is the way; walk in it.”
He guides and teaches the humble in what is right,
Psalm 25:9 NIV He guides the humble in what is right and teaches them his way.
If we ask where is the good way, and if we walk in it, we will find rest to our soul.
Jeremiah 6:16 NIV This is what the Lord says: “Stand at the crossroads and look; ask for the ancient paths, ask where the good way is, and walk in it, and you will find rest for your souls. But you said, ‘We will not walk in it.’
As we mature in our relationship with God we hear His direction.
John 10:27 NIV My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me.
You may have what seems a crazy idea, but believing that you are hearing your Master’s voice, you obey. But make sure that it's the voice of the Holy Spirit because a gut check is not a license to spiritual attention deficit disorder (ADD), or an excuse to follow any whim.
John 14:26 NIV But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.
Galatians 5:16-17 NIV So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want.
A gut check is listening to the Holy Spirit’s direction in your heart that points to honoring God. The Holy Spirit is the counselor, He is the Spirit of the living God at work in us. We must learn to yield to His voice, asking for clarity instead of suppressing any and every gut check He gives we need to ask for more.
Romans 8:14 NIV For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God.
Every Christian must spend time with God and in His Word if we hope discover where He is leading us. What do you imagine God could do with your business, career, your family, if you intentionally spent time with Him, seeking His wisdom and His way?
God is often more interested in the journey than the destination as He leads us and shapes our character. You will make mistakes and get it wrong sometimes, but don’t beat yourself up. When you trust and obey Him even when you stumble you growing stronger. If your ultimate goal is to always be proved right, you're in trouble. God is all about the process.
He’s got the end taken care of. It’s secure. He’s concerned with whether we honor and glorify Him along the way. If you’re going to fail (and you will), “fail forward”. Be moving toward Him, even as you stumble.
Romans 8:28-39 NIV And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters. And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified. What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all—how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things? Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies. Who then is the one who condemns? No one. Christ Jesus who died—more than that, who was raised to life—is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? As it is written: “For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.” No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.