Sometimes, I’m reading something and I find myself recoiling at the words. It’s difficult to explain, but if you’ve experienced this at all, you likely know what I’m talking about.
It’s a different sort of experience than one of resistance from Ego. Ego is easy to recognize, once you get the hang of it– it’s messages usually revolve around the scarcity myth, and involve shame and/or fear.
I think John 10:5 best explains the former phenomena:
“They will not follow a stranger, but they will run from him because they do not know the voice of strangers.”
Jesus paints a picture of His relationship with His own in John 10. It’s a portrait of gentle trust and provision– Jesus as Shepherd leading His sheep out to pasture.
I think it’s important for all of us “sheep” to remember, we already know His voice. We can have confidence then in our ability to wade through the myriad doctrines and teachings that the Internet may assault us with.
“The gatekeeper opens the gate for him, and the sheep hear his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. When he has brought out all his own, he goes ahead of them, and the sheep follow him because they know his voice. ”
John 10:3-5 (NRSV)
Whether it be an email, a passage from a book, or even a conversation with a friend– you just know when something is right on. Or when it’s way off.
You can tell whose voice shines through. And it’s icky when His voice is palpably absent. (Yeah,”icky” is the best word I could come up with tonight… I stand by my word choice).
Have you cultivated the spiritual gift of discernment in your own life?
If so, how has it affected your understanding of God?