John 16:13 —– However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come.
When a person believes in Christ, the Holy Spirit immediately becomes a permanent part of his life. The Holy Spirit has many functions. Not only does He distribute spiritual gifts according to His will, but He also comforts us and teaches us, and remains in us as a seal of promise upon our hearts until the day of Jesus’ return. The Holy Spirit also takes on the role of Guide and Counsellor, leading us in the way we should go and revealing God’s truth.
But how do we recognize the Spirit’s guidance? How do we discern between our own thoughts and His leading? After all, the Holy Spirit does not speak with audible words. Rather, He guides us through our own consciences and other quiet, subtle ways.
One of the most important ways to recognize the Holy Spirit’s guidance is to be familiar with God’s Word because the Spirit of God does not speak anything that is contradicting to God’s Word. Knowledge of God’s Word can help us to discern whether or not our desires come from the Holy Spirit.
If our mind and our heart are focused on Christ and His Word, we will be hearing the voice of God. However, If our focus and desire are on the world and what it has to offer, then we cannot hear the voice of God.
We must test our inclinations against the Scripture—the Holy Spirit will never prod us to do anything contrary to God’s Word. If it conflicts with the Bible, then it is not from the Holy Spirit and should be ignored.
It is also necessary for us to be in continual prayer with the Father. Not only does this keep our hearts and minds open to the Holy Spirit’s leading, but it also allows the Spirit to speak on our behalf:
Another way to tell if we are following the Spirit’s leading is to look for signs of His fruit in our lives .If we walk in the Spirit, we will continue to see these qualities grow and mature in us, and they will become evident to others as well.
When a person is in depression, their mind is captivated by their problems and worries. They hear the voice of the devil not the calming and reassuring voice of the Good Shepherd. If that same person turns on the teachings and has them playing continuously even though the person does not feel like listening, the mind which has been captivated begins to break free The person now begins hearing the voice of the Good Shepherd. The person is now liberated and free.
The Christian who neglects the Holy Spirit is like a lamp that is not plugged in.