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How to Actually Know God's Will for Your Life

Callie Williams

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Callie Williams

Software developer and writer in Nairobi, Kenya

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Recorded

  • November 8, 2019
    7:00 PM
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Father in heaven we think you for the God that you are we think you that you're a compassionate god that has a will for us to to live close to you to have an abundant life and I thank you that you're not a god that hides good things from us of what you are just all too eager to share them father I don't know the kinds of weeks that my brothers and sisters have had but whether it was fantastic or was very difficult I pray that you would take any distractions from our mind right now anything the devil is trying to use to take us away from this moment and tailor make these words by your Holy Spirit to each and every heart that we would leave this time not just fascinated by your word but more in love with Jesus and more convinced of his deep love for us we ask these things knowing that you want to answer them because we ask in Christ's name in human. So before we start I do want to ask what's on your mind. And I ask that because usually we go to something like God's will for your life you might have something already on your mind you might be thinking about a decision you're making right now you might be thinking about decision that's coming in a few months or a few years and you might not be talking about yourself you might be thinking of a loved one someone in your family that you like Lord please help to follow your will because they're not or because they're trying to figure something out and instead of taking that part out of your mind I want you to hold on to that as we go through these practical points I want you to think how can we apply these biblical principles to whatever's on your mind is a fair Yes Also high school English teacher so I'm used to interactions with teenagers so I'm used to some not in or so you're crazy so I'm open to both That's fine. So before we talk about. The 3 principles I want to bring up I want to talk about something that we already do know there might be a lot about God's will we don't know I don't know where you're supposed to go the rest of your life I don't know a career class were supposed to take over here supposed to marry only that but there is something I do know about all of us. God has revealed much of his will already in the scripture we can talk about what we don't know but there is so much that we already do know let me give you some examples and 1st have a 3 to $3.00 to $4.00 we know that God wants us to know the truth and be saved Amen he wants us to be saved that is part of God's will he wants everyone to know the truth and be saved so we can never be like Lord you want this person to be saved the answer is yes he does he wants you and everyone else to be saved he also wants people he wants us to be thankful and 1st as long as 518 he wants us to be sanctified he wants us to proclaim the excellencies of God He wants us to live peaceably with others as much as possible there's a lot under that one he wants us to live for His glory and way more than I have time for there are so many slides I could fill with so the 1st point here is before we focus so much of what we don't know about God's will we can focus on what we already do know Lord you want me to start this fight with someone who wants to live peaceably with all men and while there are exceptions to that that Christ kind of stirred up some controversy that I'm sure we can talk about too there are some principles already in the Word of God that it's not fair just to say God what is your will in this when God has revealed already so much that makes sense please say and then. Make sense to 7 people cool All right so going into these 3 points of how to know god's will more in a specific way for you and I there are 3 things that we need to believe about God The 1st one is we must obey God in order to know His will. That's confusing though because Harry's God If you don't know is will it's the wrong order strange So please go with me in your Bibles even if you know this Bible verse please go with me anyways to John Chapter 7 John Chapter 7 on your paper Bible here techie Bible all Bibles are welcome here John Chapter 7 verse 17. Jesus is talking to the Jewish leaders who just really have a hard time with Jesus for lots of reasons and they're basically in verse 14 and 15 how does this guy even know what he's talking about we didn't teach him so how does he know any of this and this is defending his teaching and verse 16 he says so Jesus answered them my teaching is not mine but his who sent me for 17 if anyone's will is to do God's will he will know whether the teaching is from God or whether I am speaking on my own authority. Jesus himself and talking to the Jewish leaders says listen if you even want to know if my teachings from God You have to be willing to do what he says that's pretty simple right just like that's the point because we pray to God God please let me know your will and that's it's implied that we will do it right I think so and it might be implied in how we speak but the question then is so then do you already strive to follow all the truth that you have right now. Why would God give more truth if you don't use the truth that you already have what's the point and we can say that we want to follow God's will that we want to do what he tells us to do when there is truth laying by the wayside that we like thinks but know things and really quick notice what this does not say it does not say do you perfectly follow everything that God has revealed that is not what that says it says Do you strive to follow all the truth that you have are you making an effort or is there some part of your life where you say God I appreciate your input but I'm not going to do that that is completely different then Lord I want to do this but I'm making mistakes along the way those are completely 2 different journeys so don't misunderstand that. So when we want to know God's will we need to make sure there's nothing off limits for God let me give you an example. A few. Months a few months ago I was talking to God about a career transition I've been a high school English teacher for the past 7 years and I'm now studying to be a full stack web developer I know very different right super crazy pray for me so I was praying about this of other sent thank you for said affirmation so I was praying about it and was asking if it's God's will because really crazy some people think I've lost my mind maybe I have. Prayed about it like Lord you know I just I want to know if I should do this and what program should I take and this is what my pearl life is going in but while I'm praying the Holy Spirit says that I need to further give someone in my family. That's where bouts of destruction will talk with a later the point is which program should I take in school a good program will help me be the best full stop developer ever comes back you should really talk to me about forgiving this person Jesus I don't have time for that thought I'm here to talk about programs please talk about programs and so it continued until I finally got the hint because I'm slow to learn things like oh wait I did talk to God about that because isn't it God's will for me to forgive people is it's God's will for me to heal past hurt and to not live a life of bitterness and even though God is still willing to guide me my programs for school he wants to talk about forgiveness right then so even though I saw that as a distraction that's a part of God's will and that's the point though is that sometimes you want God's decisions we want God's will in these grand schemes of life the Lord my friendships I mean my friends that's my business my love life that's my business how I spend my time that's my business how I distress that's my business Jesus you can do the whole career thing that's cool but these smaller decisions of my life and how I interact with people I don't really want your input but that's not how God works we have to be willing to do God's will and all the things to have his counsel in any of the things. So. We need to make sure that when we come to God in prayer that nothing is off limits and I could go on and on about how difficult that is for me and I speak from just this message all my messages are actually just Jesus breaking me and teaching me things as I go tell people about how I broke you so that's why this is the truth as well. And so in this though when you go to God in prayer when you're asking for God's will to know what to do with your life at the same time say God is there anything else that you want to talk about is there anyone else that you want to talk about is there something that I'm ignoring because of my fears or because of just something I'm uncomfortable with because I found that in those times of prayer that is when God speaks the clearest because he says I was just waiting for you to ask if that makes sense please say and then. The 2nd point is that we will know God's will when we trust that God is clear when he speaks God is clear when he speaks for we talk about his clarity let's go over how he speaks in general so how does how does he speak. The 1st way is revelation through Scripture right 2nd Timothy 316217 all Scripture is in spirit known as Long inspiration Ok sorry I do with children. And. Profit for adoption reproof and it is to build us up and I wrote this one 1st on purpose because all other ways to know god's will come back to the Word of God if anything contradicts the Word of God You're in the wrong territory the Bible is the 1st and last and always let me give you an example of the power of the Word of God in making his will clear I was wearing a mission trip a few years ago and there were 3 missionaries that weren't getting along one missionary was being offensive to 2 other missionaries who 2 other missionaries came to me and said hey this person is being offensive Can you please fix it and with Matthew 18 in my mind I'm like well you need to talk to them that's what the Bible says you need to resolve the conflicts and I'll help you if it goes beyond you but you need to tell them that they're offending you when you pray together and that's what the Bible says that's cool can you please do it thinks they left well Ok so I sort of feel comfortable though because of Matthew 18 so I went to my mentor. And I told him what happened he said Well did you take them to the Bible like nobody told him of the bible said so it's not the same you need to take them to the Word of God It's like I little left open the Yes Ok so I took my Bible and I went to the missionary and I said hey and he talks to you and they think I'm like firing them as a missionary is really scary the mission director says I need to talk to you so I took them aside and said Hey. With this Bible verse for them it's Matthew 18 because for 16 they read it like oh did you read this devotions or something whole this is what I was telling you before that what you should follow it like oh Ok yeah I'll do it and that was it I just have them read the Bible verse but I lectured them for like 25 minutes that I did nothing there is something that the Word of God can do that you and I can never ever ever do even for speaking the principle sometimes you just need to take someone to the Bible verse and sometimes you and I just need to go to the Bible verse so when we are trying to know what God's will is for us we can find so many principles the Bible verse doesn't say if you're on a mission trip and having a problem with the missionary It's a principle if your brother offends you go tell your fault between you and him alone that's what the that's what it says and you can apply that as many verses we can apply the 2nd one is God's providence is in my favorite words of Providence. We're not going to read all Genesis 37th or 50 Sorry but it's my favorite store in the Bible does anyone know what story it is. Joseph Yes the story of Joseph Joseph life is crazy and I feel like we lose how crazy it is because we know what happened like you had become 2nd is that again it's great but he had no idea any of that was going to happen he just knew his brother sold him and it was not a good time and he's impoverished house of our 1st wife has boundary problems and then he goes into prison and then he becomes important in prison his life is crazy so the beginning of his story you know he does have those dreams where she lives and stars bow down to him which is nice but that doesn't say don't worry you're going to be a slave for a long time in a foreign land and then you'll be 2nd in power in Egypt it'll all work out that was not mentioned in the dream at any point so I was Joseph out of a really hard time being faithful and all these terrible places that he was taken but Joseph was just that he was face full and proffers household he was faithful and part of his wife had issues he was faithful and he was in prison and he was faithful and he was in charge of Egypt he didn't know what was coming but he said I will live as much as I know how to serve God no matter where I am and it came together and he can look back and say well God really did leave me all of those places Borza clear what happened Providence is a lot like pressing on doors and finding the one that opens and sometimes God does it in such crazy ways like that doors not meant to open that we can see that God's hand is upon us a given example and so much as I'm 17 I was finishing my master's degree and I had set up a job to teach a year and a half prior because I planner and I know what I'm doing but then a month before I was supposed start my job they called me and said hey we don't have anymore. Had a year and a half of planning and then we get a phone call and we praise God for growth so I put the phone down the never mental breakdown and I just prayed to Jesus this does not surprise you it surprises me which I don't appreciate but it will surprise you so pleased just help me figure this out now if there is anyone in this room who is a teacher who knows teachers you know that teachers are not hired at the end of July teachers are hired in January February March if you're crazy April Max No one is shuttered at the end of July I was hired at the end of July as a full time position as an English teacher that I was not qualified for and I had 2 of the best years of my entire life Jesus opened that door I'm even asked for full time position and cloth of I was way too crazy but Jesus did that and that was his providence he didn't tell me no bible verse he didn't speak to me from the heavens but he opened crazy doors that were not meant to be open and even once when teaching got really hard because teaching always gets hard when teaching are really hard I could say God still wants me here that's so obvious so it's Ok And sometimes we can hang our faith on the providence of God and see how he has taken care of us in the past so surely he'll take you continue to take care of us. And the 3rd way that God can speak to us is through the influence of the spirit as you have 3021 you shall hear a voice behind you saying this is the way walk in it to the right to the left look it up only not looking it up because trying to please write it down as you are 3021 now in front of the Spirit is one of the those things that I have found people avoid talking about and by people I mean me also because that's like a subjective thing like Are you saying that God spoke from the heavens like yes. No he does sometimes and sometimes he speaks to us the best way I can describe my experiences are like a very like a very very pronounced strong thought like that did not come from me at all and it's a guiding thought but still remember the order if I have this pronounce thought that is against the scripture it is from the wrong spirit so be aware of that it's a revelation to Scripture then Providence but also sometimes God just speaks to us Ok of you an example a few years ago I was a Bible worker and I worked with a camera seen program in Michigan so whenever I wasn't given a Bible study I'd go work the canvassers with him as he is really hard and you need encouragement so I did that with them so one morning about 6 am I was next to my bed and just praying to the day and the Lord please guide me in this Bible study or I don't want to study this about some other day and as I was praying this very very clear pronounced Bible study outline came to my mind and John chapter 4 which is about the woman at the well and it was in my mind about how Jesus is the best canvasser and Medicare I mean I'm working with cancer like I'm a cancer but how he follows all the best principles and so like this is I'm trying to pray. But it was very strong Ok so I got my notebook out I'm just following along with thoughts and it was just like a perfectly written bible study and I finished it going else I stopped Ok but the book down that was weird kept praying 10 minutes later my friend Cynthia called me Cynthia was the camis in leader at that time she came a week you know no I'm good with the morning he s. So this is going to sell really weird. I'm supposed to give a devotional for the canvassers this morning but as I was praying about it this morning God told me to call you. I'm sorry just I'm super weird but like I think God wants you to speak Ok Do you have something I know super last minute like an hour not fine I have something Ok well I don't mean to be annoying but like it's a really strict theme like we're talking about whole Bible characters of the best canvassers I don't really know if you have anything on that I do all perfect praise God and it all came together and I went and I preached those amazing now did God give me that outline perfectly for the sermon that they know. And of them happen that often but I have had Bible studies and sermons words like Jesus like here here you go for the whole thing have a good time because of the times that it's slower but that experience really spoke to me and show me that God really does still speak to us God is willing to do crazy things just for a devotional for about 20 high schoolers God cares and God is able to speak to us if we're willing to listen to him the last one I want to talk about is counsel Proverbs 1114 I do want to go to this verse if you come with me please Proverbs 1114. The Bible says where there is no guidance a people falls but in an abundance of counsellors there is safety. God often speaks through other people sometimes a community and sometimes we are stubborn you and me and sometimes God can't quite get through to us so he gets through to our brothers and sisters so they can say if to us for him I cannot tell you how many times I've been corrected him turning by someone who listens to God better than I do. The doubt of the email is so going back to the number that job as opposed to get in July my dad is the one who told me to email the conference presidents at the end of July for a full time job and I said that's a very foolish idea as I do it anyways and I could just ignore it and said no there's no way I'm going to get a job wasting my time but I emailed the conference President he mailed a principle that principle him of me and I got a job at the end so just listening to small practical counsel different people's relationship with God Those things can guide us in ways that our brains work differently from each other right and sometimes as a way that God can appeal to us define the one another now those 4 ways what if you're still not sure what if there's something your mind said Cally cool presentation like the like the bullet points that's nice but I've read the Bible no clarity Providence still kind of confusing there's sort of the influence of the spirit I'm not sure and everyone's counsel is completely different so what do I do now this is very helpful great question. 1st there's a few reasons why sometimes God's will still not clear the 1st one is sometimes God is not clear because he actually was we don't want to obey the story of Gideon So 1st only has the 2 different ways Ok like will 1st make the fleece what actually told me to fleece what that was too easy Ok now make the ground wet in the fleece strike just trying to find a way to delay the inevitable because you know if I didn't use Midianites kind of scary I probably do the same thing but it wasn't God wasn't clear he just wasn't quite ready to obey so sometimes you and I could be talking to our friends or we can talk we can be talking to God say Lord I kind of get the sense you're going to do this but I just I don't know if it's clear and it's not lack of clarity it's just an abundance of fear and it's abundance of just not wanting to do it and God can show us our hearts and so sometimes we just need to surrender that another reason things are unclear is because sometimes we just don't need to know it's not for us to know yet or at all or to want to I'm going to do in 3 and a half years from now you don't need to know yet it's Ok if you're as Jay as much as I am if we can get if I get through it you can get through to it's Ok you don't know everything at the same time the Lord what's going to happen with my child that I you don't need to know yet what happened my sister my brother My anyone you don't need to know yet I'll take care of them and I'll take care of you just be patient and sometimes it's not our business to know it all but what's going to happen with that person is like the connection anymore the worry about it I'll take care of it God will take care of all the people you know take care of you the 3rd reason sometimes unclear is because sometimes we're reasoning from silence we're making up parts of God's will. God has gotten such a bad rep about being a god of restriction in the Garden of Eden he says You of all the trees you may freely eat just don't eat one he didn't say only these 3 The rest are banned he said you can eat all of them just not this one and whether that means there were 10 trees a 1000 trees or a 1000000000 trees he is still a god of generosity and freedom don't make him into something that he is not sometimes God says all the options are great you choose your own choosing if you're choosing between being a dentist and a drug dealer you probably got as a will but if you're choosing to be a dentist and this in this office or this office both of them might be perfectly fine and Gaza 2 is what you want I'm good either way so sometimes reasoning from silence and it's good to remember that God is a God of freedom. God's will is not always easy but it is always simple we don't have to complicate it and so please remember when God is speaking he is a clear God if he is not clear he might not be speaking if that makes sense please say men. Are last point on how we can know God's will for our life is. Believe that God is Good believe that God is good. A few years ago I was talking to a friend I just finished teaching in a short little evangelism class and one of the students catch me afterwards and told me they disagreed with my view of God go tell me more. And he basically talked about how he was saying to be a surgeon. Which takes a very long time I'm sure to go through no and he talked about how he was just you know God he had to keep a spiritual disciplines perfect because otherwise God wouldn't let him be a surgeon so Ok where do you get that I go from that well you know God expects excellence I agree and God expects us to do our best also agree so I don't do my best and God will give me what I want oh there's so many things wrong with that sentence Ok. And as we talked more and more I realized that he I told him so you know I think you believe that God is an evil vending machine so like what it's offensive. Like well that's only the belief is a vending machine because you think even if you press the right buttons you might not get what you want so he's not even just a regular vending machine he's a bad one you have to kick sometimes it's very good but that isn't the cut that we serve God is a god was better plants for us than we have plants for ourselves and it comes down you know it always comes down to this that God is a God of love and not a love like we've experienced in this world especially a lot of us now we've grown up that's not that kind of love it's a love that transcends evil we can comprehend and so it's hard to figure that out sometimes but I'm here to say that God is not an evil vending machine instead God of the God who gives us what is good. He doesn't always give us what we want though because we're often like my 10 year old brother whom I love but he thinks a good dinner is 12 Tootsie Rolls not a good dinner so I don't give him what he once but I give him what is good that might be want to see real afterwards I'm open but not 10 for dinner and God does that and that's what I love about God 2 is he loves us more than he loves our opinion of him God is willing to make us unhappy for our best you might misunderstand this Cali but this is what's good for you so that's what I'm going to do for you and so God always does what is good even if it doesn't feel good at the time go with me please to Jeremiah 2911 even if it memorize even if you have it like on a pillow at home please go with me there anyway Jeremiah I'm only saying that because when I know Bible verses I don't go blasting myself through you sorry so Jeremiah 29 verse 11 God speaking for I know the plans I have for you declares the Lord plans for good and not for evil to give you a future and I hope. God is not up in heaven thinking how could i make their stay on Earth the most miserable possible belike also saying defying God is up in heaven saying how can I bless them to such an extent that I want to but also keep them close to me at the same times they don't worship the blessings instead of me that is God's biggest problem is how do I restrain my blessings how do I restrain the goodness that I want to give to them so it doesn't push them away from me. That's when my favorite quotes that talks about God's will is from our father cares page $66.00 and it says this god never leads his children otherwise than they would choose to be led if they could see the end from the beginning and discern the glory of the purpose which they are fulfilling as coworkers with him. This is a quote that we have to accept by faith because we don't have the eyesight of God we can't see everything we can't see how even right now our lives are intertwined and we are we are interaction influence each other right now we can't see that we don't know what's best for us let alone everyone else around us but God does and when we get to heaven by God's grace we can look back and say well great job. Holding a gun anything differently excellent execution Lord sorry for disobeying you in these parts but everything else worked great God has such beautiful plans and he wants to give us that abundant life and it does require faith it does require trust but God is willing to reveal his will to us. Because we are to the last verse please. 12000 through 10 because sometimes we may even know God's will but it terrifies us that's really scary I can tell you I am moving to Kenya in 3 weeks I'm getting married in 2 weeks I'm moving to Kenya in 3 weeks most of changing careers like all my changes in batches. And that terrifies me to move that far with my family I love Nairobi Kenya it's a beautiful place I love my fiancee is a wonderful person but I'm going to miss my family and I'm going to miss knowing how things work I'm going to miss being close to my friends and I miss being on the same time zone as my friends and that can be scary so God's will sometimes beyond our capacity. And Sankranti instead Wells 9 through 10 gives me courage but he said to me meaning God said to me My grace is sufficient for you for my power is made perfect in weakness therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses so that the power of Christ may rest upon me for the sake of Christ then I am content with weaknesses and souls hardships persecutions and calamities for when I am weak then I am strong. God is such a compassionate God he isn't even like well he might think Ok here's the instructions go do it see you at the finish line and I'll see you there because it carries us and walks with us even in fulfilling the will that he has prescribed to us. So as we close so how do we actually know God's will for life how do we actually do that on a day to day basis in the big decision the little decisions 1st is follow the truth that you already have we each have enough for what we need to know right now all of us do. I know that God will tell you before to tell me more as we need to know the 2nd is trust that God is clear when he speaks if he's unclear his or not speaking or not really listening and the 3rd is believe that not only does he have good plans for you but he will enable you to walk with him where ever he takes you please by had a few more times. Father in heaven thank you for being a god that delights to show us things thank you for being a god that loves to be clear that loves to be good to us and loves to be obeyed because you know that our best lives come when we obey you. I don't know what you've said time brothers and sisters here but I pray that they would hold it in their hearts I pray that you give them courage I pray that you would give us your peace and I pray that you give us clarity and whenever we need clarity and we lay any of that in all of these burdens at your feet and we trust that you will take care of us because you already did the greatest taking care of us and sending Jesus to die for us and to take our sins as we enter into the Sabbath the rest of the stay they are peace about in our hearts may we trust you in everything we ask all these things in Christ in this media was brought to you by audio verse a website dedicated to spreading God's word through free sermon audio and much more if you would like to know more about audio verse or if you would like to listen to more service leave a visit w w w audio verse or.

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