Life is an ongoing exercise in seeking balance. Take something great and use it wrong and you’ll most likely get disappointing results. The same is true of our god-given sixth sense, whether it be a psychic inkling, dream message or visit from a guardian angel.

I’ve met  people who’ve been blessed with great intuitive abilities, yet ignored them because they’re frightened this gift must be of Satan. Here’s why I disagree with these people and why I believe God gave us psychic skills to foster our spiritual growth.

Just about everything can be detrimental when poor judgment is used.

Living life fully requires an ability to differentiate between right and wrong. An asset, when used incorrectly, can harm us. Some illustrations are:

  • food is vital to keep the body healthy, but regularly overeating stresses the body’s systems;
  • prescription drugs manage disease, but their abuse can lead to addiction;
  • being trusting and open to others are crucial in forging meaningful relationships, but blindly trusting those you know nothing about is unwise.

Our intuitive gift is no different. We just need to learn how to use it and to discern the intent of the message we receive.

The Bible expects us to use our spiritual gifts.

This sacred text encourages us to tap into our intuition and to listen to the spirit messages we receive. In 1 Corinthians 14:39, Paul encourages parishioners to be open to spiritually-oriented psychic messages as he writes, “My brothers be eager to prophesy.”

Apostle John recognized that we receive messages from spirits and offered advice on how to discern the godly from the negative. 1 John 4:1 “Do not believe all spirits, but test each one to see whether they are from God….Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, but every spirit that does not acknowledge Jesus is not from God.”

Another way John said we can determine the intent of an intuitive communication is through the power of love. In 3:14, he wrote, “Anyone who does not love remains in death”; in 4:16, “God is love”; and in 4:18, “There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear.” So if a spirit communication conveys a message out of love or to foster love, it must be divinely inspired.

Similarly, the 14th century Christian mystic, Julian of Norwich, author of Revelations of Divine Love, expanded on this concept and wrote, “God is everything that is good and the goodness that everything possesses is God.”

As in all things there are light and dark sides. Without discernment and prayer, one may inadvertently interact with negative entities. So it is of paramount importance to fine-tune your discretion and your ability to judge the intent of a spirit’s message.

More on discernment next week.