“We can either lean on our own understanding or God’s understanding. We lean on our own understanding when we trust our unstable feelings instead of God’s unshakable word. We lean on our own understanding when we trust our own opinions rather than the wise counsel of those around us.”
How can you know God’s will for your life?
Every day we’re confronted with a vast array of confusing decisions that will have a real effect on our lives and the lives of those around us. Do we become members in this church? Do we go to homeschool, private school, or public school? Should I get into a relationship with this girl? Should I take this job opportunity?
How can we know that we’re doing the right thing and are in God’s will?
Proverbs 3:5-6 makes it really simple.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart…
God is worthy of our wholehearted, unreserved, unquestioning trust. He will take care of us, and lead us, and guide us, and shepherd us. He won’t leave us to flounder in the muck of life. We can and must throw ourselves upon the Lord and trust that He’ll hold us.
When we don’t know where to go, we’re tempted to stop trusting God. We fear. We tremble. We worry about the future. The first step to walking in God’s will is trusting in God with all our hearts.
…and do not lean on your own understanding.
We can either lean on our own understanding or God’s understanding. We lean on our own understanding when we trust our unstable feelings instead of God’s unshakable word. We lean on our own understanding when we trust our own opinions rather than the wise counsel of those around us. Our own understanding will collapse beneath us, causing us to fall off of God’s path. God’s understanding never crumbles.
We lean on our own understanding when we don’t trust God with all our hearts.
We lean on our own understanding when we neglect the straightforward commands of the Bible.
There will be times when it seems to make more sense to go our way rather than God’s way. In those moments, we must refuse to lean on our own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge him…
We’re called to acknowledge God in all our ways. Not just a few of our ways, or most of our ways, but all our ways. Our attitude must always be, “Your will, not mine Lord.”
Every decision we make, from the job we take to the parenting style we choose, must be rooted in our commitment to serve and obey God.
We acknowledge God’s ways through the prayerful reading of scripture, depending on the wisdom of others, and prayerfully making decisions.
…and he will make straight your paths.
Isn’t this a wonderful promise? If we trust in the Lord, do not lean on our own understanding, and acknowledge him in all our ways, God will make our path straight. Period.
If we make decisions in humble dependence on God, he’ll lead us on straight paths. We don’t need to fear or worry because God is committed to making our path straight.
As you walk through life, don’t panic when big decisions come your way. You can be confident that his grace is sufficient for wherever he leads you. God is for you and wants to lead you on the straight path.
But what about decision “fleeces”?
You’ve got a big decision to make.
You’ve got a fat job offer, but there’s some potential. You’re thinking about this girl that you really like, but you’re not sure what the outcome will be. You’re trying to figure out if you should buy a house or keep renting. How do you decide?
How about putting out fleeces? You know, just like Gideon. In Judges 6, God called Gideon to deliver the people of Israel from the hand of the Midianites.
But Gideon was a jittery, nervous fellow, and he wanted to be sure that God was with him, so he asked God to give him signs.
In Judges 6:36-40 Gideon laid out a fleece. If the fleece was wet but the ground was dry, then he could be sure that God was on his side. Next day, wet fleece, dry ground.
But Gideon needed a little more assurance, so he decided to ask for one more test. If the fleece was dry but the ground was wet, then God was definitely with him. Once again, God came through. Dry fleece, wet ground.