Knowing Whether We’re In God’s Will

Q. Can you please explain in “practical” ways how to lay down our will to embrace His will for our life ? How do you put off your old self & put on the new self, which is created in true righteousness and holiness ? I can say the words over and over and offer my body as a living sacrifice, but when nothing changes or I don’t see evidence of change, am I supposed to just trust He is working His good pleasure in me, or are there steps I am missing ?

A. Maybe you’re looking in the wrong place. Change won’t come from outside, but from within. Here are some clues to help you see how you’re doing.

If you’re in debt, you’re not in God’s will. But if you’re striving to get out of debt as quickly as possible, then you’re in His will.

If you’re working yourself half to death to get ahead, you’re not in God’s will. But if you’re trying to simplify your life so you can live at or below your means, then you’re in His will.

If you’re making excuses for not helping others because you can’t afford it, you’re not in God’s will. But if you’re always looking for ways to give what you can when you can because you’re grateful for what you have, then you’re in His will.

If you’re worried about the future, you’re not in God’s will. But if you’re trusting in Him to look after you no matter what, then you’re in His will.

If you’re hoping the Lord will tarry until you get all you want out of this life you’re not in His will. But if you’re longing for the rapture so you can begin the next one, then you’re in His will.

If you’re too busy for prayer and study you’re not in His will. But if you look forward to your prayer time and your heart’s desire is to learn all you can about Him, then you’re in His will.

If you insist upon doing your own thing your own way you’re not in His will. But if you refuse to take any important step without first going to prayer to seek direction, then you’re in His will.

These examples all come from verses that explain God’s will for us. Doing them out of gratitude for what the Lord has given you is the beginning of offering your whole self as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God, a spiritual act of worship (Romans 12:1).

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