20th February 2017

March to a Different Drumbeat 

“Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.”
Galatians 5:25 (NIV)

When I was growing up I joined the Boys Brigade at my local Baptist church and we did lots of exciting things like play football or go camping. The one thing none of us in our group liked was ‘the drill’ – The marching around the hall to the drum and bugle. For some reason we just didn’t take it seriously, and when we had to compete with other Boys Brigade groups in a marching contest it was a nightmare. We hadn’t practised. We were out of time. We went left when we should have gone right. We were at ease when we should have been at attention. We walked into one another when we should have halted, and, while it provided some light entertainment in the Corporal Jones mode, we were an utter shambles. I can always remember a comment one of the officers made about us: “That lot were marching to a different drumbeat”!

As Christians it is important for us to march to a different drumbeat from the world around us. We have to keep in step with the Spirit, even if it means we are out of step with everyone else around us. To me this implies two things: Don’t run ahead of the Spirit, going off in a direction where the Spirit is not going or at a pace that the Spirit is not setting; and don’t lag behind the Spirit, failing to go in the direction the Spirit is leading or at the pace he is setting. One of the older translations renders Galatians 5:25 as “If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit”(KJV), which conjures up the idea of being side-by-side as you stroll together through life.

How can we ensure that we are walking in step with the Spirit, at his drumbeat? Our objective is to become sensitive to the Holy Spirit. Ask God to teach you to be sensitive to promptings from the Spirit whom he’s placed inside you. Then, believe that he will guide you through the decisions and details of your life. As you learn to walk in the Spirit, God will never ask you to do anything that violates his Word. Promptings from the Holy Spirit will always line up with the Bible; however, they may not line up with your traditionalism or pre-conceived notions. Take some time to jot down where you sense the Spirit prompting you. This will help you learn to be sensitive to the Spirit, but it will also strengthen your resolve to be obedient to God’s guidance as you see his constant, loving interest in the details of your life.

And what if you blow it? What if you misunderstand the Holy Spirit’s prompting or you disobey him? Remember God’s grace! He will pick you up so that you can continue your walk with him. It’s a learning process, and God has sent the Holy Spirit to teach you how and when to march to a different drumbeat.

Let’s listen to the music and keep in step, for the Spirit is on the move.

Father, we do not want to live independent lives disconnected from you. Help us to hear the small still voice of the Spirit, and join him where he leads.

Study by Barry Robinson


About the Author:
Barry Robinson is an Elder in and pastoral worker in the Greater London area, particularly the Camberwell and North London congregations of the Worldwide Church of God UK.

Local Congregation:
Worldwide Church of God London
Indian YMCA
Mahatma Gandhi Hall
41 Fitzroy Square

Meeting Time:
Saturday 2:30pm

Local Congregational Contact:
Martin Ryan
Phone: 07958 386944
Email:   martin_ryan@wcg.org.uk

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