New Believer's Series (17) — Seeking God's Willby Watchman Nee
Printed Copy: Available Online from Living Stream Ministry
Printed Copy: Available Online from Living Stream Ministry
Before we were saved, we did everything according to our own will. At that time we served ourselves and did everything to please ourselves. We would do anything as long as it pleased us or made us happy. However, now we have believed in the Lord and have accepted Christ Jesus as our Savior. We have acknowledged Him as our Master, the One whom we serve. We have acknowledged that He has redeemed us. We belong to Him and are of Him, and we are here to serve Him. For this reason, we need a fundamental change. We no longer should walk according to our preference; we must walk according to God's will. After we believe in the Lord, the focus of our living changes. The focus is no longer ourselves, but the Lord. The first thing we should do after we are saved is ask, "What shall I do, Lord?" Paul asked this question in Acts 22:10, and we should ask the same question. Whenever we come across a situation, we should say, "Lord, not as I will, but as You will." In making decisions or in choosing our paths, we should always say to the Lord, "Not as I will, but as You will."
The life we possess has one basic demandto walk according to God's will. The more we obey God's will, the happier we become within. The more we deny our own will, the straighter our pathway will be before God. If we walk according to our own will as we once did, we will not feel happy. Instead, we will suffer. After we are saved, the more we walk according to our own will, the more suffering and the less joy we will have. But the more we walk according to the new life and the more we obey God's will, the more peace and joy we will have. This is a wonderful change. We should not think that we will be happy if we walk according to our own will. After becoming Christians, we will find our path filled with peace and joy if we do not walk according to our own will but learn to submit to and obey God's will. Christian joy has to do with obeying God's will, not with walking according to our own will.
Once we become Christians, we have to learn to accept God's will and be governed by it. If a person can submit humbly to God's will, he will spare himself many needless detours. Many fail and stop growing in life because they walk according to their own will. The result of walking according to our own will is nothing but sorrow and poverty. In the end we still have to walk according to God's will. God always subdues us through things, circumstances, and the environment. If we have not been chosen by God, He will let us walk as we wish. But since we have been chosen by God, He will lead us to the way of obedience according to His way. Disobedience will only cost us unnecessary detours. In the end we will still have to obey.
Our question now is how do we know God's will. We often think that mortals like us could never understand God's will. However, we should have the assurance that not only do we want to obey God's will, but God Himself also wants us to obey His will. Not only do we seek to know His will, but God Himself also wants us to know His will. If God wants us to obey His will, He must first enable us to know His will. Therefore, it is God's business to reveal His will to us. None of God's children need to worry and say, "Since I cannot know God's will, how can I obey it?" This concern is unnecessary because God always has a way to show us His will (Heb. 13:21). We have to believe that God will always show us His will through the proper means. It is God's responsibility to tell us His will. If we are submissive in our attitude and intention, we will surely know His will. All of us must learn to believe that God is eager to reveal His will to man.
What are the ways to know God's will? A Christian must pay attention to three things in order to know God's will. If these three things are in agreement with one another, we can be quite sure that it is God's will. These three things are: (1) arrangements in the environment, (2) the leading of the Holy Spirit, and (3) the teachings of the Scripture. These three things are not mentioned according to the order of their importance. They do not necessarily have to be in sequential order. We are simply stating that these three things help us know God's will. When the testimonies of these three things are in agreement with one another, we can be assured that we know God's will. If one of these three things is not in agreement with the other two, we still need to wait. We must wait until all three agree with one another before we go ahead.
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