One of the most popular questions I have been asked is “how do I know God’s will for my life?” The Scripture has much to say about how to make a great decision. Matthew 6:33 is just one of many principles that should guide the decision making process. Yet I have to ask how many Christians actually make choices using the Bible as a guide? I’ve seen a few but sadly I see more folks that do what they want and then ask God to bless their decision.
The difference between a kingdom mindset and a self mindset is not necessarily the actual decision reached. Rather it is in the ambition and end goal. When our desires (rather than God’s will) are considered first. Two people could end up making the same decision, one seeking self first and the other seeking God first.
An example: Two students want to know what they should study as a major. The first, not considering God’s Kingdom purposes decides to study electrical engineering, and then on for a masters in business administration. He likes it, and knows he can excel in this field and will become financially comfortable. These are not wrong choices per se, but he has left God out of His decision. He is pursuing his own ambitions and putting his trust in the world system rather than God.
The second person brings the decision to God. Making sure he is clinging to nothing, He asks God to guide his decisions. Then he evaluates the option in light of how each decision he makes would enable him to grow closer to the Master and contribute to the Kingdom. He checks if there is anything in his options that hinders his relationship with God and also the natural desires God has given him.
He may be unclear as to his long term role in God’s plan, but he pursues his studies believing God will use the things he learns, whether as a missionary or in the secular world. Rather than grasping choices tightly he opens his hands before God, ready and willing to be redirected at any time.
I like to plan. In fact in my early 20’s I set 25 year goals in every area of my life. Yeah, I laugh about that too. While attending a college conference in Gatlinburg, Tn I felt the Holy Spirit asking me to surrender all of those goals to the Lord. All of them. Last year while cleaning out the garage I found that life goals notebook with my plan typed neatly on 8 pages. It was interesting to me that every goal written had come to pass with the exception of one. Want to guess what that goal was? The point is that eventhough I gave up these dreams to the Lord they still came to pass.
As Jim Elliot said, “He is no fool who gives up what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose.”
Tomorrow we will conclude this subject with specific questions one can ask in making a great decision.