3 Questions to Discern God’s Will

Ben Reed —  October 2, 2012 — 2 Comments

Don’t you just wish God would write His plan for you in the sky so that you’d know what He want? Don’t you just wish God would send you a Twitter message that said, “If you want to know my will, click this link: http://____. #NowGetOffTwitterAndGoDoSomething”

Knowing

image credit: CreationSwap

If we’re honest with ourselves, there’s a bit of us always looking for the easy way out. Especially when it comes to the most important decisions. If we could shorten the process, we would. It’s not a matter of trying to be disobedient or experiencing decision paralysis. It’s all about wanting to know God’s will and move forward.

But if that were how God operated, there would be no reason to have faith. We’d just know. There would be no need for trust in the midst of uncertainty, because there’d be only certainty.

God doesn’t always give us 100% clarity before a decision so that we’ll learn to trust Him. So that we’ll seek Him. So that we’ll not simply rely on our own wisdom, but we’d learn to lean in to others.

Have you ever have a decision in front of you and you’re not sure what to do?

Any life-altering, future-shaping decision has to be run through a grid. If you don’t have a framework to use when making decisions, you can find yourself way off in left field.

That’s why I have 3 questions I ask myself that have helped shape decisions I make and directions I go.

I recently had a huge life decision in front of me. Before I ever made the decision to move forward, I spent lots of time praying through these 3 questions. I worked through them with my wife. With people who knew me, knew the details of the potential move, and who understand my strengths and weaknesses.

The 3 Questions

1. Is this from Satan?

I figured out the answer to this one pretty quickly. The potential opportunity wasn’t leading me towards sin. It wasn’t leading me away from my ultimate calling in life. It wasn’t leading me to disobey clear commands in Scripture. Wasn’t leading me away from my wife and son or away from God.

This is the only question with a clear black-and-white answer.

2. Is this from my flesh?

Through this opportunity, are you only looking to make more money or serve your own interests? Are you looking to be more lazy? Are you looking for an easy way out, avoiding something you know you need to do by saying ‘yes’ or ‘no’ to this opportunity? If you stepped in to this, would you be going against what you know God has called you to do in your current situation? If you say no, would you be staying in your position when you know God is prompting you to leave?

This is the point where you have to be painfully introspective and honest with yourself.

3. Is this from God?

If it’s not from Satan and not from your flesh, it may just be from God. Before you make the move, though, ask yourself if this is even something you want to do. Is this a God-given desire? Could it serve others better? Could God use you in a new and fresh way? Could God have been preparing you for this move? Could God be leading you on a new, different, fresh journey?

This is the point where you must bring others’ wisdom in. Don’t try to figure out this answer alone.

With every life decision, work the grid. Don’t work through it by yourself, though! Grab a trusted friend (or two) and ask them to help you out. It’s hard to see your own blind spots.

Question:

Got any big life decisions in front of you?

 

 

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Ben Reed

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Christ follower, husband, father, writer, pastor of small groups at Long Hollow Baptist Church. Communications director for the Small Group Network.
  • http://www.jasonvana.com Jason Vana

    I tend to add one more question: will this opportunity fit within the purpose I felt God gave me for my life, or push me further from it?

    • http://www.benreed.net Ben Reed

      That’s a good one, Jason!