A Refreshing Example of Following God’s Spirit

Annie Yorty and I participate in an online Christian blogging community. I appreciate her heart and wisdom. To celebrate the release of her new book From Ignorance to Bliss, God’s Heart Revealed Through Down Syndrome, Annie shares about keeping in step with God’s Spirit.

Divine Detours—In Step with God’s Spirit

Sometimes my daughter inspires unexpected divine detours from my planned route. My first detour occurred at her birth, when the doctor announced she had Down syndrome. We’ve gone off-road many times since then to stay in step with God’s Spirit.

Alyssa seems to have a special connection to God that allows her to follow His Spirit without much inhibition. That connection often detours my own route calculations.

  • A dash to the grocery store veers into lunch at Chick-fil-A with a hungry stranger hanging out in the parking lot.
  • My plan for a quiet walk through the neighborhood turns into a prayer meeting with a young woman pushing a baby in a stroller.
  • My daughter and I end up on a mission trip together in Siberia. Yes, Siberia!

I wonder if we should all be a bit more like Alyssa. Apostle Paul reminded us to stay close to the Spirit living in us.

I wonder if we should all be a bit more like Alyssa. Apostle Paul reminded us to stay close to the Spirit living in us. #FollowGod #Faith Click To Tweet

Since we are living by the Spirit, let us follow the Spirit’s leading in every part of our lives. (Galatians 5:25-26 NLT)

Paul included this instruction in his letter to the Galatians because we can help or hinder the full expression of God’s Spirit within us.

5 Ways to Walk in Step with God’s Spirit

  1. Read God’s Word daily.

Your word is a lamp to guide my feet and a light for my path. (Psalm 119:105 NLT)

God’s Spirit illuminates the meaning of the Bible and helps us to apply it to our lives. When we know His ways and commit to obey, following the Spirit becomes a more natural impulse.

  1. Commit to magnify Christ instead of yourself.

He must become greater and greater, and I must become less and less. (John 3:30 NLT)

We must desire to become a transparent window through which the light of Christ will clearly shine.

  1. Express gratitude to God.

And whatever you do or say, do it as a representative of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through him to God the Father.(Colossians 3:17 NLT)

Pride erects a barrier between the Holy Spirit and our spirit. When we recognize and thank God as the Giver of all our abilities and possessions, the wall crumbles. In the rubble of our pride, sensitivity to God’s Spirit sharpens.

  1. Repent and confess to God.

But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness. (1 John 1:9 NLT)

Just as dense clouds interfere with communication frequencies, a buildup of sin obstructs our ability to hear and follow God’s Spirit. When we confess daily, the airwaves remain clear.

  1. Be still.

Your own ears will hear him. Right behind you a voice will say, “This is the way you should go,” whether to the right or to the left. (Isaiah 30:21 NLT)

God promises our ears can hear His voice. Then why do we often perceive only silence? I suspect we fail to hear His voice because busyness distracts us. Learn to wait quietly in God’s presence to hear the direction of the Spirit.

Our Choice

God allows us to choose to follow His Spirit’s navigation or to chart our own course. I know from my own self-reliant experiences, God’s GPS system is far more reliable than mine.

I’m thankful God gave me a daughter with little inhibition to teach me more about divine detours and staying in step with His Spirit. You can read more about God’s lessons in my new release, From Ignorance to Bliss: God’s Heart Revealed through Down Syndrome.

How is God teaching you to stay in step with His Spirit?



Comment here.

Meet Annie:

Annie Yorty writes and speaks to encourage others to perceive God’s person, presence, provision, and purpose in the unexpected twists and turns of life. In March, 2023, Elk Lake Publishing released her book, From Ignorance to Bliss, God’s Heart Revealed through Down Syndrome. Married to her high school sweetheart and living in Pennsylvania, she mothers a teen, two adult children (one with intellectual disabilities), and a furry beast labradoodle. Annie invites you to connect with her at http://annieyorty.com/, Facebook, and Instagram.

Copyright ©2023 Annie Yorty

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  1. Ann J Musico

    Oh that we could all be more like Alyssa!

    • Debbie Wilson

      Yes. So inspiring. Thanks, Ann.

    • Barbara Latta

      I stay close to the spirit by Bible study and prayer. I try to be still and listen to.His voice which often comes through posts.like this from friends. I am thankful to be part of this Christian writing community where I am encouraged daily by voices of other believers. Thanks Debbie and Annie!

      • Debbie Wilson

        Thank you, Barbara. It is wonderful to be connected to fellow Christian encouragers like you and Annie.

  2. J.D. Wininger

    Oh, we should all endeavor to share the closeness of walk with the Holy Spirit that Miss Alyssa does. Great lessons to be learned here.

    • Debbie Wilson

      Amen! Thanks, J.D.

  3. Nancy E. Head

    I wish our world heeded wisdom from Annie’s and Alyssa’s lives. Thank you, Debbie, for presenting these wonderful examples of God’s grace and love. God bless!

    • Debbie Wilson

      Me too. God bless you too, Nancy!

  4. Jeanne Takenaka

    Oh, how I loved reading this post. I especially appreciate the reminder to be a clear, clean window through which Christ’s light can shine. Annie, it sounds like God has used you and taught you much through your daughter!

    • Debbie Wilson

      It certainly does. Annie shares a lot of good insights on your blog too.

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