I remember staring down at the black sphere in my hands, gripped with white knuckle tension. If I willed hard enough, I thought, perhaps this plastic toy could be the item of divination I longed for. Something that would answer my question, “what is God’s will for my life?” Maybe in its triangle window, God would directly message me the answers I couldn’t find in scripture.
A Step-By-Step Guide
Do I marry this man or break up with him? Should I go away to college or get a job? Do I turn left or right? What if I picked the wrong career and made God unhappy with me? People kept telling me the answers for God’s will for my life were in the Bible, but I couldn’t see it. I was looking for a step-by-step guide for my life.
God doesn’t map out our lives in His Word. If we had all the answers laid out for us, then we would never learn to rely on Him. We would never get to see or experience moments where God directs our path. He has given us the Holy Spirit to be our guide. At 40 something years old now, I can look back and see how decisions I’ve made, the good AND the bad, have worked out for my good. And it is God who has worked it out that way.
Drowning In Indecision
But I can remember what it feels like to be drowning in a swamp of indecision. Admonitions such as “just listen to the Holy Spirit” or “meditate on God’s Word” felt like weights around my feet. What I needed was a life preserver. Panic and distress had me grasping onto anything for the answers I sought. Those glowing Psychic signs and dumb plastic toys were as tempting as chocolate cake to a crash dieter!
Do you know an old rule once taught for saving an actively panicking person from drowning? Let them sink. The victims’ fight response would calm in the sinking, making them more easily grabbed by the rescuer.
Think about that. In the calming, the rescue comes. In my panic about my life choices, I was unable to focus on the Lord. I was so focused on myself; I could not see that He was my rescue. God does provide an answer for what his will for our life is. In Romans 12:1-2 we are told “Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. 2 Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.”
God’s Will For Your Life
So we can take a deep breath and calm ourselves. Let go of the outside sources of answers we might be clinging to with a death grip. Instead, rest in the promise “Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you” (James 4:8). By the transforming of your mind and drawing near to God, you will learn to feel God’s prompting in your life. You will be able to discern His good and perfect will.
For more scriptures that promise God’s guidance, click here!
I would like to say, however, there is one “job” in scripture that is given to all believers, including you, that we must not neglect. It has to do with what we are being transformed into. God’s will for your life is to be an Ambassador of Christ.
In his second letter to the Corinthians, Paul reminds the Christians that they have been made new creations in Christ. Their sins are no longer counted against them, and they have been reconciled to God. Paul goes on to say, “Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us.” This applies to all believers today as well. We are reconciled to God as new creations. Therefore we are entrusted to be Ambassadors for Christ!
An Ambassador For Christ
Being an Ambassador is no small thing. An Ambassador is an official high-ranking position sent to represent a country. In Biblical times, Ambassadors represented kings and pharaohs. Great care and training go into selecting representatives. It is a great privilege. We must treat our positions as ambassadors, representing God to the world, with great esteem.
As Ambassadors for Christ, we not only represent God but we must also reflect the image of our creator. Paul tells us in 1 Corinthians 15:49 that we “bear the image of the man of heaven.” Who is the man of heaven? Jesus Christ! “He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation… “For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell (Col 1:15,19).” And in Romans 8, Paul tells us that we have been “predestined to be conformed into the image of Christ.”
God’s Will Is That We Look Like Christ
We are being transformed into the image of Jesus! Jesus who is “the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being (Hebrews 1:3).” By looking like Christ, we reflect the image of God to the world around us, acting as His representatives and messengers of the message of reconciliation.
We know from the Genesis account of creation that we are created in the image of God. But we also know that sin came into the world. Once we became sinful, we became self-centered lovers of self. We marred the image of God and became His enemies.
But Christ came to reconcile us to God. He also came to show us what it looks like to live as image-bearers. “To this, you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps.” We look to the life of Christ to see what he has modeled for us. Christ shows us how to be loving and how to forgive, and how to be gracious and patient. He shows us what it means to be Holy.
I want to dive into these characteristics in future posts. But for this one, I’d like to focus on one thing that concerned Jesus his entire life. Christ’s primary motivation for coming to Earth should be our motivation for wanting to look like HIm.
God’s Will For Your Life Is That You Glorify God
I know we like to think that Jesus’ primary motivation was to love us. While that is part of it, it is not His main objective. Jesus desired to glorify God. In John 17, he says, “Father, the hour has come; glorify your Son that the Son may glorify you,” and then again he says, “I glorified you on earth, having accomplished the work that you gave me to do.” Jesus obeyed God to the point of his death on the cross to bring glory to God.
We too are to live in such a way that brings glory to God. Over and over again, scripture tells us that this should be our motivation. I Corinthians 10:31 says “whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.” Whether you become a teacher or a stay-at-home mother, do it for the glory of God. When you put laundry away or are stuck at the office working overtime, do it in a way that brings glory to God.
Matthew 5:16 tells us to “let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.” And then in 1 Peter 4:10-11, we are told, “As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace: 11 whoever speaks, as one who speaks oracles of God; whoever serves, as one who serves by the strength that God supplies—in order that in everything God may be glorified through Jesus Christ.” The underlying reason for anything you do should be to bring glory to God.
Make The Decision
God has not thrown us into the rough sea of life without a life jacket. He has given us the Holy Spirit and His Word to guide us. When we make the decision to draw near to God, be transformed into His image, and glorify Him, we will be able to discern His will. In your prayers, when asking God to give you direction for your life, ask Him to show you where or how you can use the gifts he has given you to bring glory to His name. Commit to being an Ambassador of Christ no matter where you are or go in life.
In future posts, we will look at what it means to follow Christ’s example of bearing God’s image. For now, consider, is there any particular characteristic of God that you struggle to reflect?