I’ve had the subject, spiritual perception, on my heart for a blog post a lot over the last few weeks. This is an area that God has really helped me in over the past couple of years and it’s been so important in causing me to be more effective in my role as a wife, a mother, a friend… and as a Christian.
Let me give you two different definitions, one for spiritual perception that I got off of BibleGateway.com and one for just the word perception from the Merriam-Webster dictionary.
The Dictionary of Bible Themes defines spiritual perception as the ability to see beneath the outward form to the underlying, often hidden, reality.
The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines perception as the ability to understand or notice something easily.
I would say that my favorite benefit to receiving a growing revelation of God’s grace has been that it has delivered me from myself. It’s so refreshing not having to have me on my mind all the time now.
When we truly understand God’s grace, then we also understand that we can turn to His grace in every situation, which means we don’t have to carry the burden of living life all by ourselves.
I said it like this to someone the other day. “Living by God’s grace makes life so simple. When a situation comes along, we either turn to God’s grace or we try to handle it ourself. Then, the next thing that comes along, we either turn to God’s grace or we try to handle it ourself. Then the next thing that comes along…” You get my point.
Well, I certainly do not claim to always choose the way of grace as I should, but I love knowing that God’s grace is always available to me so there is never a moment that I don’t have the privilege of placing myself under it.
I brought this up because the more we give our burdens to God the more time we can spend helping relieve other people’s burdens. Every Christian can go from being very self-focused to very others-focused.
Two weeks ago while I was grocery shopping, as I was in line to check out, I looked up and there stood a cashier who had checked my groceries out numerous times before, but that day when I saw her I felt the Holy Spirit showed me that she needed some encouragement. It was like I sensed a sadness on her. It’s cool how God can cause us to notice people when we don’t have our eyes glued to our iPhone all the time.
A Game Changer For Me In Ministering To Others
One of the things I had to learn about spiritual perception, and to be honest it’s an ongoing lesson for me, is if I have my head down, always looking at my phone – constantly texting, emailing, checking all the social media news, etc – then I won’t be looking up and around at other people and I could very well miss an opportunity to be used by God to be a blessing in someone’s life.
Now, obviously anyone can make this into a law and go overboard with it. There are lots of things in life that need to be handled and I am super thankful for smart phones. The key is to stay tuned into the Spirit and follow His lead which is where grace comes into play, big time.
Grace, if we are receiving it, keeps our mind quiet because we are able to rest in Christ and hear what He has to say. Therefore, it causes us to be more aware of what is going on in others people’s lives instead of spending our time worrying about ourselves.
The Spirit does lead me to put away my phone many times when I’m out in public and even when I’m with my family because He wants me to pay attention to the people standing in front of me. He wants me to be sensitive to what is going on in their lives. I believe this is a great way to walk in love with people.
You know how good it feels when you have followed God’s lead and been able to make a difference in someone’s life through a word of encouragement, a gift, a hug, a smile, or a prayer? These can be very normal, ongoing occurrences for Christians who are spiritually perceptive to what is going on around them.
Another word we could use here is compassion. I really do feel sorry for the people who just live their lives concerned about what everyone is doing for them instead of being aware of the hurting people around them. And I am not just referring to the hurting people in another country somewhere, although we need to be aware of and give to them too.
I am talking about being aware of, noticing and being compassionate toward people in our everyday lives, including our spouse and our kids. If we are paying attention we can perceive when they are going through something. I know lately that God has been having me give my family more hugs, more pats on the back, just more loving touches in general. I can be really zoned in on what I am doing sometimes and I am thankful that God is helping me be more perceptive to how I can be a blessing to my family.
Make Only The Moves God Is Leading You To Make
A couple of months ago my girls and I were checking out at Walgreens when a girl came in dressed in an outfit that was hard to ignore. A lady must have stared for too long because the girl said something sarcastic too her. I truly felt sorry for the girl because it was very clear to me that she needed to personally experience God’s love.
I knew in my spirit that it was not the proper time for me to say anything to her because she wasn’t ready, but as soon as the girls and I got in the car we talked about the situation and spent a number of minutes praying for her. Many times God will also have me continue praying in the Spirit on and off for hours after something like this, as the person continues to come to my mind.
So, in regards to spiritual perception, it is really important that when you perceive something about someone that you make only the move(s) God is leading you to make. In this case the only move He wanted me to make was to pray for the person privately. A very powerful move indeed!
My mind is not always as quiet as I would like it to be. I have a very fruitful life with a lot on my mind, but I am developing quite a habit of passing anything and everything that comes my way onto my Heavenly Father to take care of so I can stay spiritually sharp to what is going on around me and be ready to be used by Him.
As I said before, these occurrences, where we are able to perceive things about a person, enabling us to minister to them with compassion, can be a very normal way of living for a Christian and it’s quite the adventure.
I seriously wake up so excited about life each day because I smile on the inside and think, “Wonder what God has in store for me today?!”
You can too!
If you have not yet made Jesus your Savior and received the wonderful joy that His finished work on the cross has provided for you to live in, please visit my page here titled Jesus In The Driver’s Seat. On this page I explain the good news of the gospel and you will have the opportunity to pray a prayer of salvation, making Jesus your Savior! Jesus loves you and His arms are wide open!