As we prepare for the second phase of knowing God’s will for our life, let us consider the structure in which we are portraying a methodology of understanding it.
We previously stated, it is possible to know God’s will for your life.
Such a process, we believe, can be dissected into four main steps, or phases (seen below).
1.) Knowing God’s Will, Pt 1 – Simplicity
2.) Knowing God’s Will, Pt 2 – Salvation
3.) Knowing God’s Will, Pt 3 – Sanctification
4.) Knowing God’s Will, Pt 4 – Spiritual Giftedness
We’ve already established knowing God’s will is far less complicated than many suggest, and it should be approached with a much simpler mindset. The Samuel Ministry firmly believes discipleship has become far too convoluted; it’s time to make it simple again. We are so certain of the need to return to simplicity, that we even develop content geared toward simplyfing discipleship.
God wants us to know His will for our life; He will not deliberately sabotage our efforts to find understanding and discernment. So let’s make it simple.
However, the second phase in finding, and knowing God’s will, involves a radical transformation, a transformation which is only accomplished with divine help. The second phase of knowing God’s will, concerns salvation.
Salvation is both complex and simple.
Salvation is simple on our end; it is complex on God’s end.
In online dialogues, I often refer people to some great resources concerning salvation.
I personally love the presentation my seminary – Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary – offers (found here).
Additionally, one of my favorite evangelists is Mark Cahill. His “good person” test is a fantastic way to see if you are truly prepared for eternity. I can’t recommend either of those resources enough for you to personally utilize in your sharing of the Gospel. You see, eternal life directly correlates with knowing God’s will.
The Bible, is very explicit in one penetrating thought; God wants everyone to be saved (John 3:16; 1 Tim 2:14).
God can, and will save anyone who follows Jesus as Lord (Rom 10:13).
It is actually God’s general will for you to be saved (2 Pet 3:9). God’s desire is for all to be saved, and this includes you.
So understanding God’s will, means understanding what God wants. He wants you to be saved.
God’s specific will, though, looks a bit different for every person.
For example; why is it some are called to pastor and others or not? Or why are some called to be missionaries while others are not? While God’s general will for everyone may be the same, His specific will differs entirely.
General vs. Specific
Usually, someone is referring to God’s specific will, when they ask , “what is God’s will for my life?”
Questions such as, “what does God have in store for me?”
“Where does God want me to go?”
“What does God want me to do?”
These are all fair questions to ask.
However, keep in mind; it is impossible to know God’s specific will without first having accepted his general will.
You cannot know God’s specific will for your life, until, through humility, you submit yourself under His general will through salvation.
Paul writes in Romans the following verses – verses we will use often for the remainder of this series – concerning God’s will.
“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.” Romans 12:1-2
This is important. Paul says in the latter half of verse two that you can “test” and “approve” what God’s will is; His perfect, specific will.
But notice a word he uses near the former half of the first verse, “brothers.” This is not some simple term of endearment Paul has for his friends. These were brothers and sisters in Christ. Paul was writing to Christians, not lost persons.
Literally, Paul knew the specific will of God was only for a believer to find.
Finding and knowing the will of God is a simple process which concerns salvation.
You may want to know what God desires of your life.
Generally speaking, it’s salvation.
Specifically speaking, it’s something else.
You can’t, however, move to specific without understanding general.
Only when you have trusted in Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord, are you prepared to find God’s “specific will” for your life.