I’ve been continuing to read back in this blog, and another article I came across was God Says No!
Today I came to another realisation, which is that God tells us what not to do, as well as what to do. This is hardly a difficult conclusion to come to considering the number of prohibitions in the Bible! But for some reason it had never occurred to me that when seeking God’s will moment by moment, he was just as likely to tell what not to do as what to do.
This has in fact made a considerable difference to me today. Up to now, I have (in theory) been waiting for a positive impulse from the Holy Spirit before doing anything. Now this is incredibly difficult to do, especially when one is in the midst of one’s daily work. So even on my best days I have only succeeded in hearing the Lord for short periods. This has been a source of anguish and frustration to me.
But as soon as I realised that I could also listen for the Lord telling me not to do things, life became much easier. I found that I didn’t have to wait for a positive impulse. I could just start doing whatever I felt like doing, and if it wasn’t right I would be told not to do it. Like the positive instructions, this is felt as an internal impulse - but is much easier to hear. I found that I could work much better and more confidently as a result. It’s a very good guide to the “one right thing” that I should be doing, because if I try to do anything else, I get told it’s wrong!
This strikes me as a very valuable insight, and I will try some experimenting with it.