God's Subjective, Internal, Dependable Will ~ BitterSweetLife

Sunday, March 09, 2008

God's Subjective, Internal, Dependable Will

Recently I was mulling over the topic of "God's will," and came to the conclusion that in some ways I've started thinking like an empiricist: Show me the evidence. Give me an authoritative endorsement. Show me the pile of material data that makes "God's will" make sense--otherwise, it may be just a whim.

I'm not saying that external confirmation of what we perceive as divine direction is not helpful or necessary, merely that to depend on it reflexively is a reversal of priorities. In my case, it's the insidious desire for a burning bush growing up from the stump where I had supposedly lopped it off. How is that even possible? I wrote an article about not needing a burning bush, so clearly I should have mastered that by now. Ha ha...

I think I've rightly emphasized the sufficiency of God's word for guidance, but inadvertently devalued the way God often chooses to speak to us in personal, internal, undeniably subjective ways. I get tired of hearing people play the "God's will" card as a mandate to do whatever they feel inclined to do at the moment--but the reality is, abuses don't change the fact that God frequently does speak personally, internally, to the person who wants to hear from him. Discernment is required, but discernment doesn't erase genuine, biblically-aligned experience.

After all, Jesus' kingdom resides in the hearts of his followers these days. So the heart is one place that his kingdom directives will resonate. What I'm concluding is this: If you find a specific, persistent, nagging desire to serve Christ that kind of burns a hole in your chest like a hot brick of charcoal, you should follow through.

I guess ultimately this is a faith issue. Our Father really does care about us enough to put ideas in our heads, desires in our hearts, and then affirm them. He doesn't want us to be flying blind. That foundational level of trust--the belief that God doesn't want us to choose our life path by throwing darts at a map--frees us up to sense what God is doing in our spirits, believe that this "soul work" is legit, and put it in front of other people.

Even without that empirical data, that burning bush.

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Culture. Photos. Life's nagging questions. - BitterSweetLife