Discernment and the will of God

I think I was asleep when we went through the Foundation issue of Will of God. I figured this out because I have been asking the wrong questions for many years. ‘God, tell me if I should switch jobs’, ‘should I get married or stay single’, ‘show me if I should serve in this area’, etc. I had been trying to find God’s individual will for my life in various areas, even though it was clear in the Foundation notes that God does not have an individual will for every person. Rather, He indicates His moral will for us through His word, i.e. the Bible. As for the amoral options of life, he grants us freedom to choose, but we need discernment to choose wisely.

So I must say that I’m glad that I picked up Decision making and the will of God authored by Garry Friesen and J. Robin Maxson. The foreword exposes the human motivation in seeking the will of God:

“… we persist in searching for God’s will because decisions require thought and sap energy. We seek relief from the responsibility of decision making and we feel less threatened by being passive rather than active when making important choices.”

So asking ‘How do I know the will of God for _____?’ is simply a heuristic for problem solving. The responsibility is on us to make good decisions in amoral situations as guided by biblical principles.

To tell the truth, knowing that God gave us the freedom of making decisions is liberating, yet the sense of responsibility is enormous and profound. Realising this gives birth to a great impetus to grow in discernment. But discernment does not come overnight. In fact, going by John MacArthur’s exhortation on spiritual maturity, discernment can only come through mastery of God’s word. There are no short cuts and instant formula. The only way is to immerse myself in the word of God and through its constant use, distinguish between good and evil, and learn to make wise decisions.

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