How to Know God’s Will For Your Life
Learn five simple ways to know God's will.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.
How can I be sure that I know God's will for my life? I mean, after all, it could be my will. It could be the enemy trying to speak to me, to trip me up. And so today I just want to give you five simple ways that we can discern God's will for our life.
#1 God Speaks Through His Word
Firstly, God speaks through His Word, which means that His will will never contradict His words. Let's say you're in a marriage and there's no adultery on either side. Then one person says, "Well I just don't feel like it's God's will that we need to be married anymore." We know that can't be the case, because in His Word it says that God hates divorce. So this is why it is so critical for us to read the Word, study the Word and know it backward and forward. The more we know God's Word, the more we will be able to discern His will for our life. The interesting thing is most of what we need to know in order to live a godly life has already been revealed to us in God's Word. It says it is His will that we be sexually pure (1 Thessalonians 4:3-8). It says it is His will that we should be making disciples (Matthew 28:18-20), sharing our faith (2 Timothy 4:5), loving our wives as husbands; submitting to our husbands as wives (Ephesians 5:22-33), giving regularly to our local church (2 Corinthians 9:1-6), serving and using our spiritual gifts (1 Corinthians 12-14). Oftentimes we're guilty of saying, "God I want You to reveal more and more to me," when God is saying, "Hey, you're not even obeying what I've already revealed to you to do in the Word of God!" This makes us ask the question, "Why would God reveal any more?"
#2 God Speaks Through Fasting
Secondly, God often speaks to us through times of intimacy and fasting (Proverbs 3:5-6). Let me tell you something that normally doesn't work. Let's say you haven't been spending any time at all with God, and then you've got this big decision to make, and then out of desperation you go to God, hoping to get some answer from Him. Normally it doesn't work that way. Whenever we seek God on a deep level (Matthew 7:7) and go into really serious fasting, or we just spend regular, consistent, intimate time with God, it is often in those seasons when we're spending consistent time with Him that He will actually reveal His will to us and speak very clearly to us. So the principle is this: People who spend regular time with God often get regular answers to prayer.
#3 God Speaks Through His Spirit
The third way that God will speak to us is through the inner voice of the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:16). Now I know this sounds very spiritual, but the more we stay in tune with the Holy Spirit, the more He will reveal Himself. He'll reveal His will (Galatians 5:25). He'll tell us who we need to talk to, how we need to say things, when we need to say things, who we can trust, who we can't trust, places that we should go, things that we should and should not do, what to do whenever we're tempted and how to avoid temptation, and more. When we stay in tune with the Holy Spirit, He will often speak to us and reveal what decisions we need to make on a regular basis in a variety of situations.
#4 God Speaks Through People
The fourth way that God often speaks to us is through people. The Bible says that in the multitude of counselors there is safety (Proverbs 11:14). Some of the most important decisions that I've had to make in my life I've only made after consulting godly people that I trust. Now the key here is that they have to be godly people. People whose character you can trust, and who you can trust are hearing from God. They're not going to make the decision for you. So I want to encourage you to choose about five people you know you can trust. Every time you have an issue, a problem or major decision, you can go to them and you can trust that they are going to give you God's perspective on that decision.
#5 God Speaks Through Circumstances
And the fifth and final way that I believe God speaks to us and reveals His will to us is through circumstances. God begins to open certain doors in your life while at the same time closing other doors (Revelation 3:7). This is oftentimes God's Way of saying, "This is the direction that I want your life to go down because I am behind the scenes orchestrating things and working out the details on your behalf." The problem is that sometimes we are so committed to the doors that we want to go through that we oftentimes try to force our way into doors that God has already closed.
How can we know God's will for our lives?
But how can we know God's will for our lives? Well, I'll just be honest. Sometimes I think that we can make this thing way too complicated. I would suggest simply asking God to confirm it for you in a variety of different ways but also trusting that God knows how to get in touch with us. So if He wants to get a message to us, He will. But in the meantime, I encourage you to go with the wisdom you have and make the best decision with the information that you have, trusting that if it is the wrong decision, God will redirect you and get you on the right path.
Used with permission by Global Media Outreach from Allen Parr. This article was first published as a video on The Beat.
Pray this week:
Heavenly Father, I want to do Your will. Please guide me. Amen.
Would you like help from a godly person to know God’s will for a particular decision you are facing?