On Sunday I shared a little about how we ended up here in Cottesloe. Now I want to put that through the grid of the five main ways God guides his people (stolen from Nicky Gumbel). I want to show how God led us through each of the five ways in the hope that it will help you with godly decision-making.
Five Main Ways God Leads
- Commanding Scripture (the Bible)
Besides the obvious command to ‘go and make disciples’ (Matt 28:19), this verse became really important:
Everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or fields for my sake will receive a hundred times as much and will inherit eternal life. But many who are first will be last, and many who are last will be first
There’s a lot to this, but we started to see the comfortable middle-class Christian lifestyle as falling far short of the adventure God had for us. We wanted to translate our theoretical willingness to ‘go’ and to ‘leave it all behind’ into real life action.
- Compelling Spirit (the Holy Spirit)
‘Our address of being in Christ is permanent,
but the postcode of our location of Christian service is subject to change.’
It’s hard for me to separate the first two here because ‘the sword of the Spirit is the word of God’ (Eph. 6:17). But I am glad for the strong physical impression I believe God gave me when I read these words at a crucial moment of decision.
- Counsel of the Saints (the church)
This morning my coach warned me about being an individualist who doesn’t ask for help. How easy it is to go it alone but it’s so important for us to test what we’re hearing and call on the body of believers for help.
The most common question we got asked when we told people about Perth was, ‘Why?’ I started to joke that it had nothing to do with living really close to the beach. (Of course that was a factor!) But what else? Is that the reason? Our friends and family were able to ask the tough questions as we sought out their counsel.
- Common sense (Reason)
One of the biggest reasons for coming was my good impression of Malcolm. The last guy I worked for is very different from Malcolm – very godly and very gifted, but very different! Let’s just say he was more of an introvert and an administrator! I learned a lot from him but I I wanted to learn from more of an extrovert and an evangelist.
- Circumstantial Signs (Providence)
On Sunday I shared how I kept knocking on doors in Melbourne (specifically youth and young adult pastor roles) but nothing opened. After trying and trying, and with the way the door opened here, I took this as a clear sign that God was leading us to Cottesloe.
Ruth and I give thanks to God for his steadfast love and for the way he has led us on this exciting adventure. I hope you find these 5 points helpful. Have a look over them again. Which one do you think you could work on?