AUGUST 11

Led by the Spirit

Bible Reading: Romans 8

Romans 8:14, “For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God.”

Not far from here, alongside a road which leads to Interstate 84, is a historical marker which commemorates the Oregon Trail.  I’m told you can still view the ruts in the soil from the hundreds of covered wagons which passed there long ago.  I’ve often thought of all those early pioneers must have endured in making the 2000-mile journey west.  Most started in Independence, Missouri.  Travelers faced rough terrain like the Rocky Mountains and Sierra Nevada Mountains in a journey which would take five months.  The Oregon Trail was dangerous.  The real danger wasn’t so much native Americans, but diseases, like cholera.  Other obstacles included dust storms, inclement weather, accidents, snake bites, robbers, tired or sick horses or oxen, and dwindling provisions.  A wagon train was led by a wagon master.  He was the one in charge.  Assisted by scouts, the wagon master kept the wagon train headed in the right direction.  Always on the lookout for danger, if threats arose, he would direct the wagons to form in a circle for protection.  He would decide when to stop for the night and where to cross rivers.  The wagons were all dependent on the wisdom and expertise of the wagon master if they were to arrive safely at their destination.  It would be foolhardy and dangerous for any of them to dismiss or ignore his leading.

We humans are stubbornly independent by nature, in a sinful disposition we inherited through the fall.  We foolishly believe we can somehow make it on our own as we journey through this life God has given us.  The child of God is incredibly blessed to be indwelt by the Spirit of God.  We need to be led, and in the Spirit, we’ve the very best of leaders.  He will never ever lead us in a dangerous direction and is instead even praying for us “according to the will of God” (Romans 8:27).  It is by Him we likewise pray “Thy will be done,” and are led step-by-step in that path.

B. B. Warfield has commented on this: “Sin has a dreadful grasp upon us; we have no power to withstand it. But there enters our hearts a power not ourselves making for righteousness. This power is the Spirit of the most high God. “If God be for us who can be against us?” Let our hearts repeat this cry of victory to-day.  And as we repeat it, let us go onward, in hope and triumph, in our holy efforts. Let our slack knees be strengthened and new vigor enter our every nerve. The victory is assured. The Holy Spirit within us cannot fail us. The way may be rough; the path may climb the dizzy ascent with a rapidity too great for our faltering feet; dangers, pitfalls are on every side. But the Holy Spirit is leading us. Surely, in that assurance, despite dangers and weakness, and panting chest and swimming head, we can find strength to go ever forward. In these days, when the gloom of doubt if not even the blackness of despair, has settled down on so many souls, there is surely profit and strength in the certainty that there is a portal of such glory before us, and in the assurance that our feet shall press its threshold at the last.”

How Slow I Wake!
Sweet will of God! How slow I wake
To hear your quiet word
That tells my inner man to go,
Uproot, depart, to leave my ways.
But I arise. I stand to find
Your Perfect way. And ah,
My heart, long trembling, now is still.
Sweet Spirit, Guide, I go to do Your will.

Author: looking2jesus13

Having served as pastor at Lewis and Clark Bible Church, in Astoria, Oregon, for almost three decades, my wife’s cancer diagnosis led to my retirement and subsequent move to Heppner to be near our two grandchildren. I divide my time between caring for Laura and working as a part time hospice chaplain and spending time with family and spoiling my chocolate lab.

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