Can Christ truly lead us, in real time and in practical ways, or is his lordship merely to be understood as a good doctrinal metaphor?
Ross posed this question related to leadership in a church, but it got me thinking about how I listen to Jesus and obey his leading.
I came up in the Baptist tradition, where scripture and doctrine are the primary ways that believers discern direction from Jesus. Good Christians are those that incorporate scripture into their daily thoughts, words, and actions. The Holy Spirit is acknowledged, but he is typically viewed as a presence behind the scenes. We generally recognize the Holy Spirit only when reflecting on an experience in the past. “Looking back, I can totally see how God was working in my life at that time to (insert positive outcome).”
I think Jesus is gently leading me to listen more to his real-time leading in addition to his recorded words. The two will never be in conflict, so seeking Jesus in the Bible is always relevant, but following Jesus’s real-time leading through the Spirit is still kind of a mystery. I’ve had a few experiences where I’ve said something or done some act because I felt the Spirit prompting me, but these acts have been small and their outcomes minimal (from my limited perspective). I’m praying that God will make me sensitive and increase my courage and obedience.