Gifts that Guide Us: Intelligence, Intuition, and Experience

God can guide us through our intelligence, intuition, and experience. These are gifts that God gives us, gifts which God uses to guide us.

We are guided by our intelligence. Reasoning power and intelligence is one of the ways we are different from the animal kingdom. It’s insulting to God when we say or think we are just animals. Our intelligence and reasoning powers are far above the animal kingdom. We are smart because God made us smart; intelligence is a gift from God. The good news is, regardless of our level of intelligence God finds a way to reason with us; guiding us in very simple and complex ways.

God is all things to all so that He can give us the guidance we need if we want it. God gets His point across regardless of our IQ or emotional intellegence. God doesn’t penalize us for what we don’t have or have less than others. Ironically, sometimes the more the smarts the harder it is to be guided by the the Holy Spirit, the Word of God, or life experiences that God secretly arranges. God’s guiding influence is not limited by our brain power; our capability to understand it all.

Whatever smarts we have, let’s use it for good. Raw smarts or emotion intelligence does not give us the right to be proud or arrogant. The “smarter we are” the more is required to show justice, mercy, tolerance, fairness, equality, generosity, and to do something good in our world that desperately needs all this and more. Many intelligent Christians have had at least some of these qualities – they left something good in their wake; The Apostle Paul, Michelangelo, St. Francis of Assisi, Johann Sebastian Bach, Leonardo Di Vinci, John Calvin, Louis Pasteur, C.S Lewis, Martin Luther King, Florence Nightingale, Mother Theresa –  all made the world a better place.

We are also guided through our intuition. Reliability is always the issue when it comes to trusting our intuition. It is subjective for sure. This is why it is seldom used for careers in science, investments, mathematics, and other like disciplines. It can however be very useful for personal relationships and some business decisions; intuition might sharpen our observations regarding how things work or what they are; kind of the sense and truth of things; at least until the facts come into full view that indicate something different.  It’s okay to trust ourselves.

Many an entrepreneur have hatched a new business because they had a feeling about a venture before any verifiable evidence confirmed it would be successful. Corporate and political leaders have stuck their neck out to do something new against the warnings of trusted advisors because they just had a deep conviction; an intuition it would work or simply should be done; pushing it through cooperate war rooms, and legislative debates and squabbling.

Many a romance has blossomed into lasting and happy marriages; first incentivized by an intuition of sorts, that this could be the right person. Hopefully the facts confirm  the intuitive feelings we had at first glance. This is one of the reasons it ‘s important to be who we are when presenting ourselves to others; especially someone we might spend our life with – no bait and switch. Only changing for the betterment of the relationship and the betterment of the person we are learning to love.  This is especially true in marriage. Intuition fades; the realities of the relationship emerge; trust, commitment, generosity of spirit, and lasting romance.

We are also guided by our past experiences. We often safely conclude, if it has happened this way before it is probable it will happen this way again! It is hard to argue with experience.

We have a lot of biographical detail about King David in the Bible. David is just a teenage  musician and shepherd; with no military skill or training. There was a standoff between the armies of Israel and the Philistines. The Philistine leadership came up with a unique challenge they presented to the armies of Israel; the battle would be decided between their giant warrior Goliath and any Israeli soldier who had the guts to fight him – there were no takers.

As was the case in warfare at the time, David was delivering provisions to his brothers who were in the army. When David heard about the challenge and opportunity to end the fighting by taking down the Philistine Champion, he immediately accepted. King Saul, the Commander and Chief of the Israeli army heard of his willingness to fight Goliath. Saul brought David into his war tent and ask him why he wanted to do something that seemed so likely to fail?

David leaned on his past experiences as a young shepherd. He shared that on two separate occasions a lion and a bear viciously tried to pounce and paw his flock. David miraculously struck down both the lion and the bear leaving the sheep unharmed. He went on to say that Goliath would meet the same fate as these two predators. David’s past experiences gave him this confidence. David, sidestepped the horrors of war by defeating Goliath; this astonishing upset with a homemade slingshot, likely the same one he used to strike down the lion and the bear!

Joseph C. Hutchison, Rochester Hills, Michigan 2020

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