Friday, September 18, 2009

How To Discover God's Will For Your Life Part 1 of 3

Welcome to our first online Bible study together. This blessed me so, it changed my life and I pray it does a work in you too. Here we go, every other Friday starting today. (Don't forget about our before the study questions)This was my outline for the study or it can be used by you to do your own study at your church.

Part 1 of 3.

Is it important to know the will of God? Do I even have a special purpose?

-Let’s look at what the scriptures say-

1. Matthew 7:21-23 Not everyone who says to me, Lord, Lord, will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, Lord, Lord did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles? Then I will tell them plainly, I never knew you. Away from me you evildoers!

What is Jesus saying? “….but only he who does the will of my Father” will enter the kingdom of heaven. It sounds to me like Jesus thought it was pretty important that we not only know the will of God, but that we also do it.

In verse 24 Jesus says that a wise man will hear his words and put them into practice. Let’s read what the Life Application Bible says in its study about this scripture. “Some self-professed athletes can “talk” a great game, but that tells you nothing about their athletic skills. And not everyone who talks about heaven belongs to God’s kingdom. Jesus is more concerned about our walk than our talk. He wants us to do right, not just say the right words. What you do cannot be separated from what you believe.”

There is a great importance for not only knowing what the will of God is but also that we do it.
Challenge yourself to ask "Do I know the will of my Father?" Jesus placed great importance on doing it.


2. Ephesians 2:10 For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

- God has planned in advance good works for us to do.
- We all have a call and a purpose.
- You are the workmanship of God!
God has already gone ahead and prepared (made ready) all the provisions to do whatever he asks of you. Trust that God is capable & if he has asked it then it can be done, just believe and trust in Him. You are never junk, God made you and He made you that way for a reason.

3. Philippians 2:13 For it is God who works in you to will and act according to his good purpose.

- God is not going to give you a task & then leave you to go do it alone & by your own
power and strength.

- If you want to do His will-but you are afraid- simply submit. Submit first to doing it
and God will be working in you & with you to help you accomplish His plan.

- God will help you to want to fulfill His purposes for your life. He will stir your heart
and give you new desires. Ask God to help you overcome your fears concerning His
plans for you.

Will: definition as a verb: to desire, to like, to want.

4. Colossians 1: 9-12 For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you and asking God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all spiritual wisdom and understanding. And we pray this in order that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and may please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, and joyfully giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in the kingdom of light.

- Some things are very clear to us as being God’s will and they are written for us to see
and obey. If that was all there was to God’s will then Paul would not have to be praying for God to fill them with the knowledge of His will. He would just teach it to them. Here we can see that God also has unique personal plans for us that we need to seek out, pray about and be obedient to.

- How does Paul ask God to show them his will? Through all spiritual wisdom & understanding.

- What does it mean to be filled with spiritual wisdom?
a. God’s Holy Spirit lives inside each of us and gives us spiritual wisdom. The Holy Spirit will guide you. It can only speak to you the things of God.

b. Let the Holy Spirit guide you. Listen to it. Do you know the difference between your own thoughts and that of the Holy Spirit? Do you know the difference between your own thoughts and that of the enemy?

c. We need to understand who God is. We need to know His voice. If we feel we are receiving something from the Lord then pay attention to whether it lines up with the word of God. Does it line up with God’s characteristics? The enemy will try to trick you and deceive you. We need to know if something is from God. We need to know the voice of our Shepherd.

- We should know God’s will so that we can live a life worthy of the Lord & live a life
That is pleasing to God.

- What pleases God? Bearing fruit in every good work. Growing in the knowledge of
God. Being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that we may have great endurance. Patience. Joyfully giving thanks to the Father. Being filled with spiritual wisdom and understanding concerning God’s plan for us and being obedient to it is pleasing to the Lord.

By these four scriptures we now know:
1. Only he who does the will of the Father will enter the kingdom of heaven.
2. What you do is just as important as what you believe. We must walk the talk.
3. God has planned in advance good works for you to do.
4. Each one of us has a call and a purpose.
5. God will be working in you to help you accomplish whatever He leads you to do. We are the vessel & He has the power & strength to get the job done.
6. Doing the will of God is pleasing to the Lord. It allows us to live a life worthy of the Lord.
7. We must pray and ask God to fill us with His will for our lives.
8. We receive His will through spiritual wisdom and understanding. Get to know the Holy Spirit in you and do not grieve it.
9. It is indeed important to know the will of God and we do in fact have a special purpose planned out in advance for us to do.

Okay, so know we understand that it is important to know His will for our individual lives. We understand that God has wonderfully made each one of us and has in advance known where we would be at each moment of our lives and has pre planned good works for us to do.
Maybe this was something you understood already but still you have no clear understanding of His plans for your life. Let’s take a look at what keeps us from knowing God’s plans for us.


Saying Yes to God

-At ”A Woman Inspired” online conference I asked Lysa Ter Keurst from Proverbs 31 Ministries a question concerning why I still had no idea what God’s calling was on my life. Her answer changed my life!

She said to me that more often than not, God will not speak to someone and reveal a grand plan. It is very rare that God just speaks from the beginning what the final end plan is of their calling. She said people who did great things with God had to first be willing to do the small things with him too. She said that if I was truly seeking God’s will for my life then I needed to be able to show God that I could be faithful & obedient with the little things first. She said to seek the Lord’s will for me on a daily basis, “What is your will for me to do today Lord”? She said that if I am faithful with what God entrusts to me then He will build on that faithfulness and obedience and will begin to entrust me with more and will reveal more of His will for my life.

All this time I had been waiting on some big task to do, some wonderful calling to be spoken into my spirit. I had assumed many times that the lack of this grand task being given to me meant that God just didn’t have a plan for me. I thought, “Well, maybe my calling is just to be a wife and mother. Yes, that must be it “. I was so wrong!

I was like a 1st grader who wanted to be promoted to the 12th grade immediately. After Lysa spoke and answered my question I just sat at my computer dumbstruck. I couldn’t believe how simple it all was, instead of looking for a big task, I should have just been focused daily on what his was will was for me on that day and then with my obedience with what He does give me He will then give me more. WOW. After taking it all in I began to laugh, I laughed so hard I couldn’t stop. I was so grateful to finally find the answer I had been looking for and it was so simple that I just thought it was hysterical! The one thing I hear the most from Christians (especially women) is that they do not know what their calling is and I suspect this is largely the reason why.

When we are seeking His will for us, just what exactly are we seeking? His will for the day? His will for the week, month, and year? Or His will for our life? If we get too focused on God’s will for our life, we can miss out on a lifetime of today’s. We live for today, each moment we are in is a today, doesn’t it make sense to just ask God daily “Lord, please guide me and show me your will for me today.” Whatever he guides you to, go do it. If He can’t trust you to be obedient with the little things then He certainly isn’t going to ask you to do big things.

When you are looking to God on a daily basis for His will you will find that you are listening more to the Holy Spirit inside you. When you are waiting to hear from God you will find yourself listening for Him. You will be more in tune with the Holy Spirit and as you go about your day you will find that when you feel a tug on your heart or in your mind to go do something, to call someone, to do an act of kindness for a complete stranger even, you will begin to notice that it is God who is moving you to do these things through His Spirit inside you. In that moment, that is His will for you! How many times in the past have we felt moved to do something and didn’t do it? How many times has the thought to just call a person we haven’t spoken to for months or years popped into our heads and we didn’t do it because we didn’t recognize that it was the Holy Spirit asking us to do it?

Look to Him daily for His will for you for that day and prepare yourself. Store up the word of God inside you so that God has something to pull up out of you and it will not return void to Him. God wants to go on a great journey with you, but first you must be willing to pack your bags and prepare for this journey. If you desire to do more with God then each act of obedience will take you closer to that desired place in your heart where you can let him work in you to do wonderful things.

Here is a quick prayer from “What Happens When Women Say Yes to God” by Lysa Ter Keurst.

“Dear Lord, I want to see you today. I want to hear you today. I want to know you more today. Whatever your will is for me today Lord, I say yes. Before I even know what it is, what it will require of me or cost me, I say yes to you. Pleas guide me in all that I do.”

This is a prayer Lysa recommends saying each morning before your feet even hit the floor. I highly recommend it also.

Please purchase Lysa Ter Keurst's book, it will bless your socks off if you have ever desired to do and know God's will for your life but could never find it. This is one book you will never regret purchasing!

3 comments:

Danielle said...

Some really good stuff, girl! I can see why God is calling you to share this study.

I am going to meditate on what Lysa answered to your question. So true. So true.

Mary Ellen ~ Carolina Momma said...

What a great study Jenn! Thank you so much for sharing it with us.

Jean Stockdale said...

As you strive to live a life to honor the Lord and raise your flock "in the way they should go, I am participating in a Bible study I think you might be interested in.

I would like to invite you to join us for an online Bible study for MOMMAS on the book of Ephesians. We are using my (Jean Stockdale) workbook called “High Stepping in Heavenly Places.” The 10-week study will begin Sept.24. A workbook is available with homework for 5 days a weeks. You will also be able to watch a 45-minute weekly video or download a podcast of the message, and then share in an online discussion with other moms. Interested.

Get more details at http://highsteppinginheavenlyplaces.wordpress.com or at blog at http://jeanstockdale.typepad.com. We would love to have you join us! Blessings.