“How can I know God's will for my life?” Have you ever asked yourself this question, and looked for answers that never came? I have had this discussion with so many people, and I have come to a conclusion. So many Christians believe that being in God's perfect will is about a specific “thing” or “mission” that God wants them to do. But it is so much more than that. Being in God's perfect will is a lifestyle. It is living a surrendered life that gives Him honor and worships His name.
“Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters,” Paul writes, “in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will” (Romans 12:1-2, NIV).
If you want to know God's “good, pleasing and perfect will”, Paul says, become a living sacrifice for Him. Because of His mercy for you–because of His love and forgiveness for you-because of the free gift of His life for you, make your life a gift to Him. Choose to live a life that honors His love that died for you–a lifestyle with choices that are pleasing to God. Don't become like the rest of the world concerned about themselves and only what makes them feel good or happy. The rest of the world puts itself first and is filled with immorality, hatred, discord, jealousy, rage, and selfish ambition (Galatians 5:19-20). It can't understand the love and freedom found in choosing others over itself. Choose to live a life like Christ's, Paul says. Then your life will honor what God has so freely given you–His own.
Be transformed and renewed in your mind by the Holy Spirit, Paul says. Don't think like the world thinks. Don't judge and be negative. Don't live a life that reacts with no control to whatever happens. Allow the Holy Spirit to change your life from the inside out–your attitudes, your patterns of thinking, and your desires. “Be made new in the attitude of your minds,” Paul writes, “ and put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness”(Ephesians 4:23-24, NIV). Then the fruit of the Spirit will be alive and well! You will walk a sacrificial life of love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control (Galatians 5:22).
Living a sacrificial life is God's good, pleasing, and perfect will. When you live a surrendered life guided by the Holy Spirit, you will in be His will. You will be able test each “mission” or “thing” that comes before you, and by faith either patiently wait for His timing, or step forward in His bidding. Don't struggle to “know” the “things” of His will. If you are living a life that He molds and shapes, you can “commit to the Lord whatever you do, and he will establish your plans” (Proverbs 16:3, NIV).