As I think today about knowing the will of God, I’m reminded of advice I’ve received from pastors and mentors over the years. Two years ago, I wrote a post, “8 Nuggets of Wisdom When You Can’t Figure Out God’s Will.” Here are some additional nuggets I’ve received over the years.
- “Get some prayer partners as you seek God’s will.” Prayer is a cry for God’s help, and prayer partners can help us hear God’s voice more clearly. Pray particularly for wisdom.
- “Don’t overcomplicate it.” To put it simply, the Bible already tells us much about how we’re to live. If we get these things right, we won’t wrestle as much with the unknown details.
- “If you’re not daily listening to God and speaking to Him through spiritual disciplines, don’t assume you can hear him properly today.” Too many people turn to the Bible and prayer only when they need to know God’s will. Doing that is like trying to hear the voice of one with whom you haven’t had a conversation in a long time.
- “Be godly now as you seek wisdom for tomorrow.” We’re called to be holy as God is holy (1 Pet 1:15-16). If we aren’t being faithful to what is clearly revealed in scripture, why should God trust us with information about the unknown?
- “Be faithfully involved in a local church.” God creates His local church in such a way that all of us need each other (1 Cor. 12:12-31). To try to determine God’s will as a loner is a mistake.
- “In the context of local church fellowship, know your giftedness.” Work with your church leaders to think about and understand all God has created in you – and then pray, “Lord, use me however You wish.” Others often help us know God’s will for us.
- “Don’t lean only on a spiritual gifts inventory.” No inventory is enough to help us know how God wants to use us. It’s only one tool among many others to determine God’s will.
- “Look around you.” Take a look at your community and the nations. See the needs around you. God will show you where you fit into the story.
- “Do something.” I give Kevin DeYoung credit for this point in his book, Just Do Something. We at times get so hung up on finding God’s will that we fail to serve Him fully today. Don’t let that happen.
- “Learn from your mistake, and start again.” I needed these words from a mentor after I got wrongly engaged many years ago. I had misread God’s plan for me, and I was ready to drop out of ministry until this brother encouraged me.
What would you add to this list?