The need for discernment

I had a conversation today that only reinforced what I personally experienced. We have a real NEED for discernment in the church today. There is a part of me that cringes everytime I hear people talking about listening to the voice of the Lord (i.e. when they are in prayer, etc.) because I really do think the vast majority of people in the church can't tell the difference between God's voice and the masquerading "angel of light," the devil. My own issues with this came from a point in my life when I was really serious about doing whatever God wanted me to do and not give a rip what anyone thought. Unfortunatly, I couldn't always tell the difference between God's voice and the devil. As a result I found myself in more and more bondage despite trying to obey God. Thankfully, I went to a place of deliverance before too long and all of those voices that told me to do things that seemed Biblical, disappeared. This is an issue that too many people in the church don't want to discuss, but it is very real. One of the biggest schemes of the enemy is to push people to do stuff that sounds Biblical, than heep condemnation on them when they don't do it. God doesn't guilt and shame people. There is a thing called conviction, but it is vastly different.

Anyway, I am getting off on a tangent. In my conversation today, I talked to a guy who had been locked away into mental health hospital a few decades ago, because he had tried to obey "God" when he was doing what he thought God's voice told him to do... which turned into being some "pretty flaky things." Eventually he realized, that the enemy comes to steal, kill, and destroy, but God comes to give more abundant life. If the "voice of the Lord" told him to do something that would cause destruction in his life or relationships, that it probably wasn't the voice of the Lord.

I would say, walk through the steps that are in Neil T. Anderson's, The Bondage Breaker, and say good bye to the enemies of the Lord for good. James 4:7 speaks the truth. Freedom from guilt, blame, shame, demonic fear, etc. is nice, and paid for by Jesus. Sadly too many people are controlled by the above instead of living in the perfect freedom. If they only knew that it was already paid for, but is something they need to apply to themselves... while a sinner's prayer might be what is necessary for salvation, deliverance doesn't necessarily come because of salvation.

I can't say I am perfect on hearing God's voice now, but I am at least free of hearing what I thought was God's voice. And for that I am grateful.