“Are you going to college?”
“What do you want to do with your life?”
Today, we answer all of those stressful questions that disturb your sleep and plague your thoughts.
Because I have felt this burden so, so much. Those relatives/well-meaning church members unintentionally putting pressure on us teenagers? Yeah, I get it.
We have this noose over our head about where we want to go in life, what we want to do, and how to get there.
If you’re like me, fresh out of high school and thinking about college, this pressure is building. Just yesterday you had to ask your mom of you could make a ham sandwich and now you have to make decisions that will determine whether or not you’re going to be successful in life. Fun times.
And it’s become overwhelming veeeeery fast.
It’s become so large that it’s all we think about and suddenly we don’t feel like anything will be great enough.
Firstly, I would like to ever so gently, ever so kindly, shame the people who want to push us towards “our future”. I may even be talking to you, who thinks your future is your own.
Because that’s the thing.
You do not own your future.
If you think that somehow you can chart the unknown, you are exactly like the people pressuring you and stressing you out.
You and everything about you was determined in infinity’s past by a God who knows eternity.
Now that we’ve stripped the delusion that we have anything to do with any of this, we can talk about how to proceed
Recently, I was wrestling with restlessness (can I get that on a T-shirt please? Thank you).
I wanted to become something amazing, save the world, and turn the tides of the U.S. government by the time I was 24 and got married.
Then again, I wanted to live a quiet life, help my neighbor, and raise a cute little family.
Then again, I secretly wanted to be an actress and already had my Oscars speech planned out.
You see my problem.
On top of those wild dreams, I was stuck in Composition II, Literature, and Human Growth and Development in college to become a teacher
Fast forward a few months and now I’m hoping to become a Licensed Practical Nurse so I can make a small income while I get a degree in biblical counseling
Did I ever see myself or my future where it is right now?
This question can be boiled down to one thing: What is God’s will?
That’s what we’re really asking, right?
God has taught me so, so much in the past year, and let me tell you one thing: it was not of myself. He was so gracious, so kind in my ignorance to bless me with the knowledge and the rest that only He can provide.
So, let’s discuss this:
What is God’s will for your life? It’s a synonymous question to the one of “what do I want to do with my life”? Or better yet, “How do I know what God wants me to do with my life”?
People have a very warped view of God’s will.
It isn’t hidden. God is not a celestial Easter bunny who’s covered up what he wants you to do in the bushes and gives you hints as to where it is. You don’t need to go to the far reaches of the Earth to seek it out and find the meaning of life.
The thing is that God is in the business of having a will for your life and making it known to you. He won’t purposely frustrate Himself because he is sovereign and doesn’t need people figuring out what He has already planned.
He will reveal His will for your life in His time.
And that’s incredibly important! If you’re seeking His will for your life, that’s a distinguishing factor of a believer. In Romans 12, Paul says so that, “We may know what is that good and perfect will of God.” As well as in 1 Peter 4:2 ““That he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh to the lust of men, but to the will of God.”
So here is God’s will for you.
1. That you be saved. This is where it all begins! In Matthew 18:11 it says, “For the Son of Man has come to save that which was lost. What do you think? If a man has a hundred sheep, and one of them goes astray, does he not leave the ninety-nine and go to the mountains to seek the one that is straying? And if he should find it, assuredly, I say to you, he rejoices more over that sheep than over the ninety-nine that did not go astray. Even so it is not the will of your Father who is in heaven that one of these little ones should perish.” His will is for us to join His family and a unified body of Christ. This is the basis for the rest of our lives..
2. That you be Spirit-filled. As a believer, we are granted the gift of the Holy Spirit that dwells within us. You don’t need to go chasing it—it’s something you have already obtained. And there’s a huge difference between having the Spirit reside in you and having the Spirit have dominance over you. The Spirit is the fire inside of us that propels our faith forward. In Matthew 14, we have the example of the storm on the sea of Galilee where Jesus walks on water. Being spirit-filled, Peter jumped out of the boat and began walking with Christ as well. On the other hand, you can be filled with many other things: doubt, fear, lust, greed, etc. What has total control of you?
3. Submit. Oh yes, that simple task that is ever so difficult to achieve XD But it is essential to the blueprints of God’s will, if not the very basis of everything we strive to do. 1 Peter 2:13 says, “Submit yourself to every ordinance of man for the Lord’s sake: whether it be to the king, a supreme; or governors, as unto them that are sent by him for the punishment of evildoers, and for the praise of them that do well. For so is the will of God.” What kind of student, citizen, child, or employee are you? Do you submit in every area of your life? (Do be careful not to obey man over God.)
4. To suffer. It’s a difficult topic. Trust me. In our fleshly spirit, we fear trials and it’s hard to accept that Christ has called us to suffering. But this is His will. 1 Peter 3:17 says, “For it is better if the will of God be so that you suffer for well doing than for evil doing.” But do take heart, friends. Your suffering, however minor, does not go unnoticed or forgotten by God. Every time you stand alone, say no, or praise Him in difficult times, God keeps a record of those things that will be added to our treasures in Heaven. But these are evil times, and we can’t neglect the danger of that.
5. Give thanks. We serve a mighty God who cares enough to remember how many hairs we have on our head. No one else cares about that insignificant detail except God. In everything, give thanks. When there is nothing but darkness around you, when there’s no material thing to be thankful for, God is still in control. He is still sovereign. And for that fact alone, we can rejoice.
Now, if we have this foundation, our desires will be God’s desires. We will know where to go to college, what to do with our lives, and what courses to choose because we will be one with Him.
My dear friends, this is a large task, and I implore you to be in the Word constantly. It is the tool that will save you, fill you with the Spirit, show you what to submit to, carry you through suffering, and give you cause for thanksgiving. This is what God’s will is for your life.
And I’m not disregarding the importance of your future, nor am I saying that it’s easy to be 100% God-owned, but I encourage you, brothers and sisters, that God is sovereign. He will reveal His plan whenever he ordains it. Our initial (Godly) desire gets us moving, but we have to let God shape it on the way and give us circumstances along the road.
So whether or not you become an accountant, parent, missionary, or professional bird-watcher, you dwell in God’s will.
It’s tough in this culture that urges us to take control of our own lives when it isn’t ours in the first place, but we are called to a higher standard.
In Christ, we’ll make it through, friends!
I’d love to hear your thoughts! Have you been struggling with this? I know I have XD Thank you so much for reading!