How to Know God's Will for Your Life
Over the years of following the Lord our family has crossed several impasses (some of which felt like the crossing of the Jordan to us!) where we desperately wanted to know God’s will for our specific situation.
During each seeming “impasse” God has taught us more and more on how to know His will for our lives. We have learned through inspired council that to know God’s will, four things should come into alignment and agreement.
First, the decision you make should agree with God’s words found in the Scripture. Secondly: you can begin to see God’s design for your situation through providential workings. Thirdly, God will often help illuminate the path you are to take through “impressions of the Holy Spirit.” And finally, you must have a willing heart to obey what God shows you. “Until you have the resolution to obey God’s will you cannot have His guidance” (5T, p. 511) Too many times our human flesh will take and twist God’s word, His gentle whisperings to us and even invent supposed providential openings to secure the path we alone desire.
This morning while I was reading in Jeremiah 32:6-9, I saw a beautiful picture of the prophet Jeremiah following this outlined method to know God’s will in his life. In verses 6 and 7, we are told that “the word of the Lord” came to Jeremiah telling him to purchase a piece of land that belonged to his uncle’s son. So Jeremiah had the “Word of the Lord,” already given to him, but he did not act until the “word” was confirmed. Then in verse 8 we see that his uncle’s son came to him “according to the word of the Lord,” and said: “buy my field...for the right of inheritance is yours...buy it for thyself.” He waited for more confirmation! And at the end of that verse Jeremiah says: “THEN I knew that this was the word of the Lord.” And finally, he acted on what God showed him...he was obedient to God’s will. (Verse 9: “And I bought the field of Hanameel, my uncle’s son...”)
God desires for us to seek Him diligently when stepping out in any new direction. God wants great things for His children, but He knows what’s best and when it is best for us. Listen to Jeremiah’s words after he followed God’s will in this situation: “Ah Lord God! behold, thou hast made the heaven and the earth by thy great power and stretched out arm, and there is nothing too hard for thee”
Nothing is too hard for God to bring to pass in your life. If He can bring about the promised child to Abraham and Sarah “who against hope believed in hope, that he might be the Father of many nations, according to that which was spoken,” despite “his own body being now dead, when he was about an hundred years old, and neither the deadness of Sarah’s womb.” (Romans 4:18-19)
If we like Abraham (and Jeremiah) do “not stagger at the promise of God through unbelief,” but instead stay “strong in faith, giving glory to God.” (Romans 4:20) God will be able “...to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us” (Ephesians 3:20)
So today if you have seen through 1. God’s word, 2. His providential workings, 3. Impressions of the Holy Spirit, and 4. are willing to be obedient to His call, you can trust and be “fully persuaded that, what He has promised, He is able also to perform!” (Romans 4:21)
We are not left alone to guess at what God desires for us. He has left us a “great cloud of witnesses” throughout the Bible, with many, many examples for every situation. It is up to us to seek out those examples and to be ready to hear His “still small voice,” speaking to us and telling us: “And thine ears shall hear a word behind thee, saying, This is the way, walk ye in it, when ye turn to the right hand, and when ye turn to the left. (Isaiah 30:21)
Be ready to take a leap of faith if that’s what He calls you to; but also be prepared at times to wait if His guidance points in that direction. And always remember that God will “never leave you nor forsake you,” especially in your deepest “impasses,” He will always be there ready to assist and light the path one step at a time!