Just a question:
What was your reaction when you saw the title of this blogpost?
Did you sense any alarm bells going off after you read it?
(Please take a moment to reflect on your reaction before you continue reading this post.)
“Viewer discretion is advised” appears on the screen as part of the introduction to many television shows and movies. This broadcast phraseology generally warns us that the content that follows may contain inappropriate, disturbing, violent, sexual or graphic scenes.
It is a meaningful advisory.
However; how often does this phrase make us flinch these days? The majority of us gloss over this warning thinking that we can handle anything that follows it.
But, can we?
Can You Hear It?
Do you realize the phrase “Discretion is advised!” is being declared around us all the time? If you listen closely, you will hear a gentle voice resounding this cautionary message to you.
This year, the Day of Pentecost (or Pentecost Sunday) is on Sunday, May 19. On the Day of Pentecost, the Holy Spirit came upon a group of people united in prayer in anticipation of His arrival.
It was a mighty visitation that altered history. (You can read the full account in Acts 2.)
One of the Holy Spirit’s roles is to be Our Guide. He directs our steps on the right path, and He prompts us to return to it when we veer off course.
The Spirit of God speaks to our heart. He is Our Helper, and He longs for ongoing fellowship with us. He will never force us to do anythng. He is gentle, loving, and comforting.
How attuned are we to hear His voice? Here’s why listening for His voice will impact your life for the better.
Why Discretion Matters
Many activities are now considered common, but have you taken time to consider whether all common things are good for you?
Fast food is common, but is it good for you?
A workaholic lifestyle is prevalent, but is it good for you?
Sinking deep in debt is rampant, but is it good for you?
…adultery, violence, pornography; the list goes on and on.
We make choices every day with short- and long-term consequences. Many of our choices not only affect us, but also our future generations.
I define discretion as making a decision to choose and act responsibly based on the guidance of the Holy Spirit.
The Scriptures underscore just how essential discretion is in our lives:
“Discretion will preserve you; understanding will keep you.” (Proverbs 2:11)
Wow. Discretion will save and maintain your life! Therefore, exercising discretion in decision-making is essential.
And it is the Holy Spirit who prompts you to exercise discretion and make wise decisions.
Freedom to Decide
I have personally met individuals who believe that true freedom is one’s ability to revel in whatever he or she so desires. But, it did not take much time for them to admit that they did not think of how such choices place their wellbeing (physical, spiritual, psychological, emotional, etc.) at risk.
We are living in times where humanity has access to on-the-edge and outright dangerous experiences. Many experiences can turn out to be entry-level steps that lead to more serious consequences.
Discretion is strongly advised in Scriptures. Exercise discretion throughout your life.
Pause to consider the outcome of your decisions ahead of time. Preserve yourself from the perverseness of our times. Choose wisely.
Ask the Holy Spirit for help. He will come alongside you to be your Guide.
May His Spirit of truth guide you into all truth, according to John 16:13.
“For his God does instruct him to discretion, and does teach him.” (Isaiah 28:26)