In my last message, I was talking about the difference between faith and trust, saying that when we make a decision we must say that we are trusting God, not having faith. I thought that I might have seemed to imply that if the decision we made was God’s will everything would go wonderfully, and if it wasn’t everything would be terrible. I hope I didn’t mean this, as that is not right at all. We may do exactly what God wants us to do and run into problem after problem and hardship after hardship…On the other hand, we may do precisely what God doesn’t want us to do and have everything go wonderfully. This is not the test of whether or not we are in the Lord’s will. Didn’t Christ say that those who followed Him would suffer for it? Overwhelming success could even be a sign that we aren’t following God’s will!

I appreciated what one man wrote concerning finding the will of God. He said he is often tempted to say to people who ask him how to find the will of God for their lives that “you will never be able to find the will of God.” (He never actually said this to anyone, but if he did…) He supposed that the person he said this to would be quite taken aback, and ask why he thought this, and he would respond, “You do not know enough about the Word of God to be able to discern the will of God.” (I don’t have the writing in front of me, so I may have misquoted him slightly.) Anyway, I think that the idea is accurate. How can we hope to find God’s will if we do not know what God is like? And how can we ever know what He is like if He does not reveal Himself to us? And how does He reveal Himself to us, if not through his Word? Many people seem to live life in the hope that someday lightning will strike and let them know what God’s will for them is. But this just will not happen.

For example, when you have been married for a long time and have come to the point where you know your partner well enough, you might find yourself faced with a situation where you are asked to make a decision without that person there, and you will have to decide what he (or she) would do in that situation. At that time, you will know him well enough that you will automatically be able to discern exactly what he would do and say if he were there, and will be able to, if you wish, speak for him and say what he would want in that situation. Of course, it will be up to your wisdom to decide whether or not it would be a good idea for you to do this, or if it would be better for you to wait and ask him to make the decision, even though you know exactly what he will say. This is not something you will be able to do the first day or even the first year after you are married, but will come with a lot of time together, a lot of shared experiences, and a lot of love.

So it is in our relationship with God. As time goes on, we will be able more and more to just know what God would think and do in a certain situation. I also think that the more we grow in God the more we really will think about Him as a person a lot like us. Not that we should carry this too far…we should always have a deep respect and awe of Him. But I wonder how many Christians when they sin really think about the fact that they have hurt God’s feelings by doing so? Is God so real to you that you think about hurting His feelings when you do something against Him? Do you imagine Him smiling in pleasure at your actions when you obey Him and do what is right? Do you know Him so well that you could almost hear exactly what He would say to you in a certain situation if He chose to speak? This is all part and parcel of getting to know our God and how He thinks of us. May He help us all to come into a greater knowledge of Himself.