By Rick Cowman
As we continue our walk through the gospel of John, this week’s encouraging word is found in verse 34 of chapter 4. Jesus’ disciples had been running around trying to find something to eat. They seemed to be more concerned about filling their own desires than in fulfilling God’s plan for their lives. Been there?
When they approached Jesus about eating something, He told them (verse 32) that HIS hunger was met by something they knew nothing about. Then in verse 34, Jesus explained: “My food is to do the will of Him who sent Me, and to accomplish His work!” More than anything, Jesus’ desire was to do what His Father had sent Him to do. That was more important than feeding any physical hunger, and it was the driving force of His earthly life. We remember just before He would give His life for us on the cross, Jesus prayed to His Father, “Not My will, but Yours be done!” Half the battle in knowing God’s will is WANTING to know God’s will; the other half is being WILLING to do His will once we know it. Perhaps that’s why we struggle in this discovering process; God knows we aren’t willing to do it if we did know it!
The problem we face in knowing God’s will is we confuse what we want with what God wants. We confuse our desires with God’s desires for our lives, and we get hung up on our opinions and lose sight of God’s heart! But friends, it doesn’t matter what you think or what I think that matters. What matters is what God thinks, what God is saying, and what God is doing! We must constantly be asking ourselves, “Is this what I want to do, or is it what God wants me to do?” Another way we miss God and His plan is when we make the mistake of thinking we are the ones who must make it happen. And sometimes we‘ll miss Him by not paying attention to what God is already doing in our lives!
Knowing God’s will takes time in His Word and time in His presence. We tend to have a microwave mentality; but God’s work is done in a slow cooker! If we’re not spending time with our Lord in prayer and meditation in His Word, how can we know His will? We can’t! It’s in building a love relationship with Jesus that we find His heart and His will for our lives. Henry Blackabee says it this way: “Everything in the Christian life, everything about knowing and experiencing God, everything about knowing His will depends on the quality of our love relationship with Him!” That’s the first thing God commanded. He tells us the most important thing in our lives in Deuteronomy 6, verse 5: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart!” And Jesus repeated it again in Matthew 22, verse 37. This is where we must begin if we’re to know God’s plan for our lives! In short, knowing God’s will requires knowing God!
What’s driving you today? Psalm 37, verse 4, tells us: “Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart.“ If we find our delight in the Lord, if knowing Him is our life goal, then our desires will become His desires , and God will gladly fulfill them! So, what, more than anything else, do you desire? I trust your response would be, “Lord, more than anything, I want Your will to be accomplished in my life; nothing more, nothing less, nothing else!”