As a Christian teenager I remember a lot of discussion on the subject of God’s will. In some sense, other than talks on obedience, it seemed as if it was the subject I heard most growing up in church, as a youth group member. There seemed to be a lot of pressure for young people to find exactly what God had in store for their future.
This is not a new theme to our society. The way we function, even within non-christian circles, seems to be the same, does it not? Many teens are pressured by their parents or schools to choose as an adolescent what to do for the remainder of their lives. One major city within the United States was even talking about holding diplomas from high school graduates unless they provided some plan for their future at a college, trade school, or occupation.
A lot of the problem comes from how we look at God’s will. At least in the States, we often look at it as major life events. You know, the big ones like if you go to college, and where. The kind of person you are going to marry, where you are going to live, and what you are going to do for an income. While all these are important, and these few major decisions will splinter off into so many of the things that we do, how we get there can be more important than the final destination.
I like to say, if we knew our future we would be bored and terrified. Think about it. Step back and think about someone older that you know well. Think about the major losses, setbacks, or tragedies they endured. If you knew all of them from the outset, you probably wouldn’t leave your house. Maybe you would avoid good relationships because of a couple bad days. I also think you would be bored. If you saw the seasons of life that are full of monotony you would be terribly bored waiting for the high points in between.
So instead of looking at God’s will for your life as something of a long term destination, let’s look at it differently. Picture yourself in the woods at night. You have a flashlight. In front of you there is a maze. On that maze there are several hazards, and they are marked as such. In each of those hazards maybe there is something that you see that would be pleasurable to you. You keep walking and follow little signs that are guiding you along the way of the maze. Along the way there are places that make you stumble, even as you pay attention. But someone has also placed for you treasure along the way. There are pieces of gold at certain points, food, and places to take shelter. There are even others doing the maze at the same time. Some of these people provide comfort for you and have walked parts of the maze themselves showing you right paths to take, and ones to avoid. You finish the maze, and to your enjoyment, the end is full of bliss.
This is a better picture of following God’s will. Psalms 119:105 says, “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.” God’s will is taking the path one step at a time. It’s not full of just the “big things in life.” It is full of daily interactions with others, daily choices to do right or wrong. As we read and study God’s will we see that a lot of it has to do with obedience. This is not necessarily in big areas, although it could be, but the little choices we make day after day. You can find out what they are by doing a simple internet study by looking up the phrase, “this is the will of God.”
Think about this as well: if we are taking the little steps, if we have God’s Word to light our path one step at a time, where will these steps lead us? I believe as we take the little steps, the bigger steps will fall into place. The problem with just looking at big goals in finding God’s will, is that we miss the little ones. And if we are not being faithful in the small things, why would we expect that He would lead us to the big things in life? God doesn’t operate in a vacuum. We can’t just look to Him for the big problems or pleasures of life. We need to follow Him step by step every day. So if you feel that you are not finding God’s will for some of the big questions of life, step back for a second, and ask God what He wants out of you today.
Thanks for taking time to read this Maddening Theology post. If you enjoyed this content you can find Pastor Tim’s sermons at www.cornerstoneforestcity.org. You can also join us at 520 Marion St. Browndale, PA 18421 on Sundays at 10:45 AM. To make following the blog easier you can also register. You can also join us on Facebook at Cornerstone Forest City. Also, don’t forget to download our APP on iTunes or Googleplay.