Did you think I was going to tell you what it is? No such luck. I have often run into people who are struggling to know what the will of God is for their lives. I have sought specifics myself. I have even met some people who seem to know. I met one woman who warned me not to tell her son-in-law about a particular job he would have been awesome at because it was God’s will that her daughter remain overseas as a missionary and I’d best not mess that up.
The reality is that unlike “The Way” the will of God is not usually that narrow or specific as to dictate the details of our lives. I have met people who have been so distraught over having possibly missed the will of God somehow that they are beside themselves that they might be forever off-track.
The reality is you are doing the will of God wherever you are seeking/attempting to live a life of obedience…no matter what you are doing.
It is not God’s will that you find that one person destined for you. It is God’s will that as you seek that person (or simply journey hoping to meet such a person) that your journey be in submission to that which is God.
It is not God’s will that you be a pastor so much as it is God’s will that you pastor wherever you are to whomever you can. Should that lead to a vocational role in ministry so be it…but we must be careful how cavalierly we attempt to use Gods will in our lives to justify personal desires or to interfere in other people’s lives.
We say “I am doing this because it is God’s will” when we should say “I am doing this because I want to and think I can honour God along the way” because this is closer to the reality.
I have heard stories of men telling women that they knew it was God’s will that they should become their wife. This is not only wrong but abusive and dishonest.
“It is God’s will that I go to Bahamas and mission.”
Is it? Is it really? Does this mean if you go to the impoverished First Nations of Canada in the north you are not doing God’s will? There is nothing wrong with ministering to people in the Bahamas…there is something wrong with claiming that this, above any other place, is where God wants you to minister as if God’s will is so exclusive (and warm).
The dangers of assuming so narrow a definition of God’s will is it contributes to an abusive theology. A leader can claim it is God’s will for their congregation to offer him their money (and in some cases their daughters). I would say sons as well but I have yet to encounter a female leader in the church who has been as abusive as our men have at times and most of this abuse has been done under the warrant of “God’s will”.
The reality is all that we do is our will…it becomes God’s will when we seek to act in a way compatible with that will. We are not puppets of God’s will as much as we would like to be. The all-knowing, foreknowledge of God is not the same as inescapable fate.
Do not be discouraged if you think you have lost sight of God’s will in some way. What does God want of us? Micah sums it up best –
“God has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” – Micah 6-8
The brilliant thing is that you can do all of this, God’s will, no matter what you do, no matter who you are with (or not with) in life, no matter what your job.