I don’t know about you, but I have always struggled with the question, “What is God’s will for my life?”
Whether it was figuring out where to go to college, or grad school, who to date, who to marry, or where to move, I always experienced an existential angst over whether I was making the right decision or not. Then, once I made them, I struggled with whether I had made a mistake!
It’s a miracle of God that Chelsea was patient with me in our first year of marriage. I’m pretty sure I told her that we would be moving to either Denver, California or New York. Then I told her I was going to do industrial distribution, vocational ministry or we would be missionaries. The organized planner in her absolutely loved that season of our life.
No matter where you are in life you have either asked those questions in the past, will ask them in the future or are asking them right now.
What is God’s will for my life? What does He want me to do? What step am I supposed to make? How will I know if I’m making the right decision?
What is God’s Will for My Life?
These are important questions, but I think we blow them out of proportion. Here’s what the Scripture says is God’s will for your life.
3 For this is the will of God, your sanctification (1 Thess. 4:3)
Wait, what? That is God’s will for my life? My sanctification. What about my college, degree choice, career, career change, spouse, number of kids we’re going to have or where we’re going to live?
These are all important questions that God cares about, but at the end of the day he wants you to be sanctified no matter where you go to college, what career you choose or where you decide to live.
One Degree of Glory to Another
Sanctification is just a theological word that means the process of becoming more like Jesus. The Apostle Paul wrote that we were all being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another (2 Cor. 3:18).
In this process, we are fighting to become more holy and God is producing fruit within us. It’s a cooperation between God and man. Paul wrote for us to, “work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.” (Phil. 2:12-13). We are to work out our salvation, but God is also at work in us.
On my sabbatical I was spending time with a friend when he spoke these words to me. He said, “Scott, you have to remember that your destiny is not so much about a place, as much as it’s about a Person”. What he was saying is that all those other decisions of life are important, but looking more and more like Jesus every day was more important.
So as you make decisions in your life, fight the anxiety or paralyzing effect that can overcome you in the process. Remember that no matter the decision you make, God is going to use it to mold you to look more like his son in your thoughts, actions and emotions.
What you’ll realize in the process is that as you walk toward the Person you’ll find your place and your purpose.