“For I have not hesitated to proclaim to you the whole will of God.”
As you wrestle with uncertainty about what God’s will is for you in your specific situation, I want to illustrate what I shared last time about God’s specific will. If you recall, I made the claim that God will not expect you to follow His specific will (as opposed to His general will which is revealed in the Scriptures) without making that specific will understandable to you. What follows are some examples of such times in other disciples’ lives.
- The apostle Paul and company: Of all people to have uncertainty about the will of God – the apostle Paul? Read Acts 16:6-10 and you’ll see that Paul and co. were doing God’s (general) will by traveling around and sharing the good message about Jesus. They were stopped from going where they intended – twice! The Holy Spirit prevented them from going into Asia Minor and then from going into Bithynia. They didn’t understand why until God gave the apostle Paul a vision at night which made it clear that they were to go to Macedonia instead. Do you see the example for us? Do what you know God’s general will is and, as you do, trust Him to make His specific will known to you if any course correction is needed.
- King David: King David, who genuinely loved and honored God, shared with the prophet Nathan his desire to build God a magnificent temple. The prophet initially said to David, “Whatever you have in mind, go ahead and do it, for the Lord is with you” (2 Samuel 7:3). Nathan and David were both operating with the knowledge of God’s character and will that they had up to that time. God needed to correct them, though, so he sent Nathan back to David with a different message: David’s son, not David, would be privileged to build God’s temple. God was not angry about David’s desire to build a temple for Him; rather, He needed to correct the plan, and so He made Himself understood to His faithful servant.
- Joseph and Mary: When Joseph found out that his young bride-to-be was pregnant with a child that was not his own, he wanted to do what was right in God’s eyes. He was seriously considering divorcing Mary quietly because he really wanted to save her from as much public shame as he could. This was all flowing from a righteous man’s understanding God’s general will. God needed to correct course for him, so He sent the angel to give him more information and instruct him about what to do next. Once again, God made Himself understood about His specific will when someone was seeking to do His general will.
I hope these real examples help illustrate the truth, Disciple, that as you focus on obeying the will of God that you do understand, you can trust Him to make clear to you His will that you don’t yet understand. Fix your mind and efforts on the things He always wants from you as expressed in the Scriptures, trusting Him to clarify anything special He might want from you right now.
Walking in the light I have with you,