26 Now an angel of the Lord said to Philip, “Go south to the road—the desert road—that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza.” 27 So he started out, and on his way he met an Ethiopian eunuch, an important official in charge of all the treasury of the Kandake (which means “queen of the Ethiopians”). This man had gone to Jerusalem to worship, 28 and on his way home was sitting in his chariot reading the Book of Isaiah the prophet. 29 The Spirit told Philip, “Go to that chariot and stay near it.” Acts 8:26-29
In those days the direction of the Holy Spirit was clear and obvious. It was the quickest way for the Gospel to spread. The recipient of this command, Philip, still had to be obedient to the Lord, but when an angel of the Lord appears before you, it’s a pretty good sign that it’s what the Lord wants.
Our “messages” from God are usually not quite as distinct. Often we have to decipher what God’s will is for us in a given situation. We pray and ask for clear direction. We ask Him to open and close doors, but it’s just not the same as having an angel of the Lord standing before you and telling you to go south. Actually, Philip really didn’t know what he was getting into when he went south. But it became evident when he saw the chariot.
There are times when the will of the Lord is apparent. Most of the time, though, He gives us wisdom to make good choices.