“What is God really saying?” The common question that is often posed to the Christian believer can also open the door to the most common problem for every Christian, over spiritualizing. I would never tell any fellow believer to not ask this question, it often brings great clarity and forced focus on Bible, prayer, circumstances and the church. Henry T. Blackaby shares the principles of being in the center of God’s Will in the teaching series Experiencing God: Knowing and Doing the Will of God. I would highly recommend going through the teaching to any and all Christians. I want to elaborate slightly on the four areas of knowing God’s will.
Many Christians understand that reading the Bible is important and we should be reading it regularly. However, our understanding of Scripture should be deeper than just doing a daily bread reading or reading your Psalm for the day. The Old Testament reminds us often of the reward of teaching our children the law and writing the scriptures on the tablets of our hearts, but not knowing the scriptures prove to be a problem
My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge; because you have rejected knowledge, I reject you from being a priest to me. And since you have forgotten the law of your God, I also will forget your children. – Hosea 4:6
I am thankful for the new covenant of grace that God has given us through Jesus Christ, but let us not forget the lesson of the importance of scriptures. You can memorize the passages, preach the word of God and have a basic understanding of Scripture; but, if you misuse or avoid the Scriptures in your daily choices and decisions, you stand to make an unbiblical choice.
Prayer is vital and a must for the believer. Whether you are seeking an answer to a long hard fought question or just waking up and doing your day to day, we are to be a people of prayer. Imagine what it would be like if we treated our spouse like we treat God. We wake up in the morning, we whisper a quick prayer that sounds the same everyday as we get ready. We grab our cup of coffee and pray over our breakfast, lunch and dinner, telling God to bless the food. We go through our day and jam in a good 20 minutes of Bible and prayer just before bed. Our relationship with our spouse would be doomed for death if this was the communication pattern we kept.
pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. – 1 Thessalonians 5:17-18
Having a set prayer time dedicated on a daily basis is biblical and just fine; however, the Apostle Paul is telling us to change our attitude, praying always throughout our daily routine. The key is that this is only possible when we are fix our eyes on Jesus and look to be thankful in all circumstances. God answers prayer, but if we are too busy talking all the time how can we hear? A big part of our prayer life should be reflection and listening… being teachable.
Our circumstances is an area that Christians rarely have a problem paying attention to and seeking answers through. The problem is that we can often just filter our life decisions by circumstances alone and this can be dangerous. Circumstances themselves are free of emotion, but we are human and we have attached emotions to just about every circumstance. When our circumstances are mixed with prayer and the Bible we stand a much better chance to make a godly decision.
The church is the Body of Christ. We need to rub shoulders with like-minded people who love God and ask them for sound advice. The key is to have someone you trust to tell you the truth no matter the circumstance or relationship. It is too easy to ask for advice once you have already made up your mind and then sell it to your friends, family and church family. Coming to someone who is godly for advice and asking them to join you in prayer for an answer or direction is much better than laying it out for them so they feel pressured to agree or else let you down.
When the combination of Bible, Prayer, Circumstances and the Church come together when seeking direction, you stand a fighting biblical chance to make the godly choice. Remember that God loves you more than you can imagine and even in our bad choices, He is there. We deserve nothing from God yet He extends grace and mercy to us daily.