The will of God is fascinating to me. I have realized just how vitally important it is to stay in the plan that God has made especially for my life. Jeremiah 29:11 says, “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.” I truly believe that deciding to follow God’s plan is the best decision I could ever make.
Think of God’s will as a train track. If a train somehow comes off the track, it means nothing but destruction for that train. You never hear of a train jumping the tracks, and then continuing on its journey as if nothing happened. Instead, you hear of horrible accidents and collisions if a train jumps the tracks. People lose their lives, freight is destroyed, and massive damages are incurred. In the same manner, if we fail to stay on the track that God has laid for our lives, we take the path of our lives into our own hands. And that is a very scary thought. Indeed, who is more capable of planning our lives, the very God who knows the past and the future and created all things that were and all things that are to come, or us humans, who are subject to frequent changes of heart (and mind) and don’t know what tomorrow holds, much less years in the future?
Unfortunately, the track that God laid for us can be much harder to stay on than a train track. It requires prayer and fasting to search out the Lord’s will. In the first paragraph, I referred to following God’s plan as a decision. It truly does take a conscious decision to find the Lord’s will. It’s not always going to come in a dream or in a vision (although this does happen!). Instead, most of the time, it will be a still, small voice gently leading you to make the right decision in whatever situation you are in. Our job is to make sure we are sensitive enough to the Spirit to hear His voice.
In 1 Samuel 1-3, we read the story of Samuel. His mother, Hannah, promised God that if He gave her a son, she would bring him to the temple to serve the Lord all the days of his life. 1 Samuel 1:20 says, “Wherefore it came to pass, when the time was come after Hannah had conceived, that she bare a son, and called his name Samuel, saying, Because I have asked him of the LORD.” True to her word, when Samuel was old enough, she brought him to the temple to serve under Eli. One night, as Samuel was sleeping, he heard the voice of the Lord. (I Samuel 3:3-10):
“ 3 And ere the lamp of God went out in the temple of the LORD, where the ark of God was, and Samuel was laid down to sleep;
4 That the LORD called Samuel: and he answered, Here am I.
5 And he ran unto Eli, and said, Here am I; for thou calledst me. And he said, I called not; lie down again. And he went and lay down.
6 And the LORD called yet again, Samuel. And Samuel arose and went to Eli, and said, Here am I; for thou didst call me. And he answered, I called not, my son; lie down again.
7 Now Samuel did not know the LORD, neither was the word of the LORD yet revealed unto him.
8 And the LORD called Samuel again the third time. And he arose and went to Eli, and said, Here am I; for thou didst call me. And Eli perceived that the LORD had called the child.
9 Therefore Eli said unto Samuel, Go, lie down: and it shall be, if he call thee, that thou shalt say, Speak, LORD; for thy servant heareth. So Samuel went and lay down in his place.
10 And the LORD came, and stood, and called as at other times, Samuel, Samuel. Then Samuel answered, Speak; for thy servant heareth.”
Now, we are not always going to have an Eli handy to tell us what the voice of the Lord sounds like. And, in those spur-of-the-moment decisions that often come up, we need to be able to hear and discern the Lord’s voice the first time. Sometimes, we don’t have time to hear it three or four times. The only way we can become familiar with God’s voice is to hear it often. And how are we supposed to hear His voice if we never talk to Him? By reading His letters to us (the Bible) and talking to Him, we show God that we are interested in hearing His voice. He will speak to you, if you take the time to listen.
If we put our lives in God’s hands, and become accustom to what His voice sounds like, we won’t have to worry about anything. Philippians 4:6 (NLT) says ”Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done.” He has a plan, purpose, and path for our lives. Our only job is to say, (Luke 22:42) “…not my will, but thine, be done” and then, trust the He has it all in control.