I knew that I wasn’t the only one who wrestled with this question. I would hear people say things like; I’m waiting on God to show or tell me what I should do; or they would ask me “How can I know God’s will for me?”; where do I find it; how do I get Him to tell me?
My answer is that God will always answer. He will clearly say “Yes”, or He will clearly say “No”, or He will clearly tell you to “Wait”. That sounds easy doesn’t it? The problem is that, although we are “saved, sanctified, and filled with the Holy Ghost”, we still have our human nature and it’s will and ideas. We also have an enemy whose desire is to confuse us and destroy our witness to the goodness of God.
So we have at least three voices, God, me, and Satan. As I have said in past posts the battleground for spiritual warfare is the mind. When Satan talks to us it is through our minds so that decisions made outside God’s will start there in the mind so the answer to our question or prayer, outside God’s will for us really becomes our decision.
How Do We Know The Difference?
Learning to hear the voice of God in the midst of the other voices is not a one time thing. It’s a process. If you read the book of Psalms you will get a glimpse of David’s struggle, a bit like spiritual whiplash. In one breath, he cries about his worries and fears, and in the next, he returns to profess his faith in God, who reigns bigger than all his fears.
The best way to sort out the voices is to learn God’s Word and plant it firmly in our hearts. Then we must take our thoughts captive and discern if they are from God or from the enemy. When they’re from the enemy, we must exchange them for God’s truth.
2 Corinthians 10:4-5 NIVThe weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.
Here are some suggestions that will help you know the difference between your thoughts, the thoughts put into your mind by Satan, and God’s thoughts which are always perfect and for your good:
* When God speaks, He never contradicts the Bible or His character. That is why it’s so important to know what the Bible says.
* God never condemns or shames us like the enemy does. God forgives us, and His voice gently corrects us out of love, to keep us in a right relationship with Him.
* God leads us and stills us, whereas the enemy pushes and rushes us.
* God’s voice is comforting, calming, and reassuring, while the enemy worries, frightens, and stresses us.
* While the enemy confuses, God encourages. God is never the author of confusion (1 Corinthians 14:33).
The secret is to shift the responsibility for all outcomes to God. We must choose to trust God.
Matthew 6:25-34 NIV “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life ? “And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you—you of little faith? So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.
The Will of God has more to do with controlling our hearts and desires than what we do in our planning and ideas. We will know the Will of God more intimately as He reveals it, helping us to learn and grow. As we grow close in our experience with Him, His Will unfolds in His perfect timing!
Proverbs 16:9 NIV In their hearts humans plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps.
Jeremiah 29:11-12 NIV For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord , “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you.
Lamentations 3:25-26 NIV The Lord is good to those whose hope is in him, to the one who seeks him; it is good to wait quietly for the salvation of the Lord .
Proverbs 3:5-6 NIV Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.
God, I want to take every thought captive in obedience to You. Help me to choose to trust in You instead of in myself. In Jesus’s name, amen.