Jesus answered him, “If a man loves Me, he will keep My word. My Father will love him, and We will come to him, and make Our home with him. He who does not love Me does not keep My words. The word which you hear is not Mine, but the Father’s who sent Me. “I have spoken these things to you while I am still with you. But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, will teach you everything and remind you of all that I told you. Peace I leave with you. My peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled,
neither let it be afraid.
– John 14:23-27 MEV.
During a very difficult season of our lives when we did not know who we could trust, Grace and I started meeting with a wise and godly counselor who was part certified clinician, part Spirit-filled pastor, and part loving grandpa. In that challenging season we thank God we had such wise counsel helping us process relationships, teaching us who to walk with closely and who to run from quickly.
The Holy Spirit is also a counselor. Jesus promised in John 14:26 that “the Counselor, the Holy Spirit—the Father will send Him in My name—will teach you all things” (HCSB). Most counseling appointments with pastors and therapists are about relationships— who to trust and who not to trust, how to proceed on a path forward and how to part ways forever.
As a practical point, it seems that this discernment of the Holy Spirit is often referred to as your “gut.” Oftentimes you cannot put your finger on the exact reason why someone seems unsafe, and perhaps you feel bad even thinking ill of someone, but the Holy Spirit often works through your gut. This gut instinct of the Spirit is often God’s way of helping you have caution concerning other people.
Have you prayerfully considered your relationships? Are there any that you need to modify or end? Has the Holy Spirit been giving you a gut feeling about someone that you need to heed? Do you have any pattern of making foolish relational decisions because you have not been Spirit-led in your relationships? How is your relationship with the Holy Spirit and how can the Holy Spirit help you have wisdom and health in your other relationships?
Once you understand the relational discernment brought by the Holy Spirit, you can grow in wisdom and know how to handle foolish and evil people.