Oswald Chambers calls it a sense of restraint.

I think that's the best description I've heard because when I try to explain it to someone they look at me as if I had two heads.

Even yesterday in my post I described the still small voice as a 'pushing in on my heart' and that just tells the physical part of how listening to God affects me.

The reality of His small voice in my life comes much like Os explains it, as a 'sense of restraint'.

As I pondered that this morning it was clear that before I accepted Jesus as my Lord and Savior, any restraint I felt about doing the wrong thing came from a list of dos and don'ts I had learned.

After I gave my heart to Him, His counseling, convicting, changing voice pressed in as a 'sense of restraint' in areas I hadn't noticed in the past.

Like yesterday with Mr. Safety, for example. Before Jesus, Mr. Safety (see yesterday's post) would have irritated me, then I would have felt guilty for being irritated because of a 'don't' I'd learned about losing my cool with other drivers. I'm sure I've seen a commercial about the dangers of Road Rage.

But instead of guilt, that 'still small voice' pressed in and made me see myself in Mr. Safety's seat and it had NOTHING to do with him. It was a life lesson God was whispering to me, "You stay over there in the past lane too long too. Sometimes you want to live there so you don't have to face today. Come with Me. I've got a road before you that you haven't even traveled yet ;o)"

(Yes, I felt the gentle smiley face at the end of that 'sense of restraint'.)

I felt compelled to share that today because before the Holy Spirit took up residency inside my life, I didn't get it. And now I'm often asked, 'How do you KNOW when God is speaking or guiding you?"

Os describes it well. It's with His 'sense of restraint' that causes me to stop focusing on the problem, the circumstance or the injustice and zero in on the lesson. His Voice creates a hesitation from reacting in old familiar ways and provides a split second opportunity to approach this moment from a new perspective.

God, thank you for the gift of Your Holy Spirit! I remember what life was like before it and I am forever grateful for your grace that saved me from that path. Tune us into Your Voice today. Give us listening ears and a tender heart to receive every 'sense of restraint' with obedience. In every small detail, have Your way in us today, we pray in Jesus' name, amen