The Bus Stop is a series of true stories about my life, people I've worked with and events I've experienced. Of course the names have been changed. I hope these stories will brighten your day with a few laughs as well as give you encouragement. Hopefully you can avoid making some of the mistakes I've made and if you have already made them, then you can identify with me.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

What is God’s Will?

This has to be one of the most perplexing questions for Christians and non-believers alike. We make it so complicated that it is impossible to learn the truth. I don’t know how many times I have asked this question and how many have asked me this question. “What is God’s will for my life?” The real problem is when we don’t care.

Many years ago when I was a young pup, Karen and I had probably been married less than a year and living in the rural area of Mineola, Texas. At this time I was 21 years old and was a Youth Director of this small country church. To be honest as I look back I realized I was not qualified to be there and I felt I had no business being there because I was so ignorant. At this time I knew nothing about the Bible nor did I even have much life experience to draw from. I realized God had put me in a crash course. This became very apparent to me over a short time. I had all these legalistic ideas of being a “good” Christian and of course I was failing. One day I was at home alone extremely frustrated, angry and hurting. I was on the floor sobbing because I felt like such a loser and failure because I was such a horrible person. After some time I picked up my Bible and saw this verse and I have never forgot it. I really didn’t understand it completely at the time, but I knew God was speaking to me. It’s Psalm 51:16-17 and it said, “You do not delight in sacrifice, or I would bring it; you do not take pleasure in burnt offerings. The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise.” I don’t even think this needs much explanation, but I also like The Message version as well. “Going through the motions doesn't please You; a flawless performance is nothing to You. I learned God-worship was when my pride was shattered. Heart-shattered lives ready for love don't for a moment escape God's notice.”

These were all the questions I asked myself.

  • What have I given up
  • What am I sacrificing
  • Where do I move to
  • Have I enlisted in some sacrificial work that I hate
  • Is God’s will left or right
  • What am I supposed to do
  • How often do I need to do it
  • Is this the right job for me
  • Should I go back to school or is this the right school for my child
  • Will God love me more if I….

I was injured at my job in McKinney and was off of work for a year. I finally went back and I ended up injuring myself again and was out again. I just knew that during this time it was God’s way of setting me up in something special. I knew it was just around the corner, but it never came. At least I thought it hadn’t. Then I had heart surgery and died a couple of days later and was revived. So many people told me that God definitely had a special purpose for me and this got my hopes up again. I knew it was coming anytime. What did I believe was coming? My dream! What was my dream? I really don’t even know anymore. God is in the process of reshaping it.

Years ago I heard someone say, “All of us are willing to be something for God, but are you willing to be nothing for Him.” That hit me where it really hurt. I was willing to be something, but I honestly couldn’t say I was willing to be nothing. I feel as if I’m on a path of becoming nothing. My health is failing, I work a very mediocre job, every day I feel may be my last and one of the few things that I can still do and love to do is write. I’m not telling you this because I want you to feel sorry for me. I probably do enough of that already. The truth is, I really don’t think I’ve been feeling sorry for myself because I have to admit I’ve grown closer to God. Oh, I still get upset and even mad at Him at times, but we work it out.

Now to answer the question, “What is God’s will for your life?” It’s really quite simple in answer, but extremely difficult to do. God’s Will is in His Word. He wants our HEART! He doesn’t want perfection or service, He just wants our heart. As said, “For the eyes of the LORD run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to show himself strong in the behalf of them whose heart is perfect toward him.” 2 Chronicles 16:9 The first step to have a perfect heart is to accept Christ into our hearts. I believe what God is saying is He wants us to completely and wholeheartedly agree with Him. That His Word is final and we don’t change it to fit our lives and circumstances. He wants our hearts! Our life may be all screwed up, but God wants our hearts to be perfect. Life changing begins with the heart. It’s always from the inside out, not the outside in. Otherwise it is just worthless actions.

We have been placed on this planet for a purpose and our main purpose is for a relationship with God. Everything else needs to fall behind this. Whenever we put ourselves ahead is when we start having serious problems. During this life we will have all kinds of distractions, blessings and adversity, but we have to keep our hearts on the mark. I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. Philippians 3:14 What is the mark? Heaven! I’ve heard many times it is not the destination, but the journey. I disagree. If it wasn’t for the destination then why even make the journey. This should be the desire that keeps us going. It’s not the futile purposes we have everyday, but the prize at the end of the race. Our responsibility is to take everyone with us that we can. How often do you think about heaven? Do you really have any idea what it’s like other than the silly propaganda you’ve seen on TV or movies? There are several books on the subject you may want to read.

Of course you can’t think about heaven without thinking about hell. Hell is something we don’t like to think about because it’s uncomfortable. So we just don’t think about heaven or hell. Not thinking about it is not going to make it go away. Jesus spent more time talking about hell than He did heaven. Why? When I took my children to Six Flags for the first time, I really didn’t have to sell them on the idea. I knew they were going to love it and they did. However, when I told them about horrible things in this world I cautioned them several times to be careful. Jesus is doing the same thing. He knew that heaven was going to blow our minds away and we couldn’t even understand it anyway. So any time you accidentally burn yourself cooking, hot water in the shower or picking something hot up for an instant, think about how that split second hurt, think about what that feeling all over your body would feel like for an eternity and never a second chance.

Many believe heaven is the default and you only go to hell if you are really a bad person like Hitler or Charles Manson. It doesn’t matter how good or evil a person is. What matters to get into heaven is the fact our names are written in The Lambs Book of Life. Do we trust Jesus for our salvation? If anyone's name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire. Revelation 20:15

So, what is God’s will for our life? To become like Christ and to have a relationship with Him. It’s difficult to become like Christ if we really don’t know anything about Him. We learn about Him in His Word. Anything else really doesn’t matter as long as this comes first. The problem comes when Satan will do anything and everything to keep this from happening and get us off the path. Just keep coming back to the path.

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