The Blessings of Being in the Will of God
April 23, 2017
This is the continuation of a series of Podcasts started in Episode #541.
Few of us grasp the inherent blessing that only comes with being in the will of God. In His will is an open heaven with everything that we need in abundance.
(Martha) I was thinking as I was driving about the enormous blessings God has poured out on me, and I wept. And I said, “God, please, I want people to know the benefits of being in Your will and being committed to Your will.” And His will is where you get everything you need. His will is where you get the open heavens. Being in His will causes your prayers to be answered. But in the post I tell about, and I quote a friend of mine who wrote me recently. We were corresponding about this. She said about God’s will, “We lie to ourselves. We convince ourselves God just hasn’t spoken, because He hasn’t spoken what we want to hear.”
(Martha) “When we are not surrendered and rightly related, we think we know, and we just want God to consent to our decision. That is not prayer. That is not seeking His will. That is, ‘I am god, now do what I want.'” But something occurred to me, and it wasn’t out of the blue. It turned out to really be the Holy Spirit. I thought, “You know, I’ve never looked up the word ‘will’ in “Thy will be done.” So, I went to Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance…
(Martha) And I was blown away by the definition of will. And it has ignited God’s fire in my heart to love His will. And this is what it says in the Greek. “Will: Not to be conceived as a demand, but an expression or inclination of pleasure toward that which is like that which pleases and creates joy. In other words, God’s will is a gracious, loving gift to us, His will, that is for His good pleasure and our joy. It pleases and creates joy. His will is designed to please and create joy.” So, God’s will is an offer, not a law, and I always… We’re free to refuse His will. We are free. That’s the one place we’re free, and He gives that freedom. Yet, He’s filled with His own good pleasure toward us, and in His secret plan for us is our fulfillment. I do know that one.
(John) When I had read that I was blown away, because of, you know, my concept of the will and everything like that. But to know that there isn’t some angry mandate over the will is mind blowing. And then to know that it is blanketed with pleasure…
(Martha) That’s mind blowing.
(John) That’s mind blowing.
(Martha) It really is. I don’t think of His will that way. I think of it as a law. I think of it as something good now, but certainly not this glorious definition that I’m reading. And Jennifer said after she read this, she wept. She said, “I’ve believed that God’s will was outside of God’s love.” Isn’t that brilliant? And it isn’t, it is filled with His love and His good will and His joy. I could sense His intent. This is the second part of the definition. “When will denotes God’s will, it signifies His gracious disposition towards something, and it’s used to designate what God, Himself, does of His own good pleasure.” And see, the amazing thing about it is His intense joy over giving us His will. He’s giving us a gift of fulfillment. Whatever path we have to go, the end of it is glory and fulfillment, our fulfillment. And I’m so aware that we really don’t know who we are in our new creation, because when God calls us to be who we are in our new creation, we don’t want it. It doesn’t feel like it’s right. What He calls us to do is usually not what we would have chosen, so we have to die a whole lot. And Andrew Murray goes into that (Thy Will Be Done, carried at LivingChristianBooks.com). But it’s His good pleasure. The astounding thing about it is that He will fulfill His will Himself. He will perform the will He asks of us. But we’re free, we’re totally free in that decision.
(John) Whew! It’s just so huge. It’s just so… Oh, my gosh!
(Martha) It’s life changing, isn’t it, John?
(John) It is!
(Martha) And what my friend was trying to say and said it very well is that we delude ourselves, “Oh, I’m listening for His will, I’m trying, I’m asking, I’m talking, I’m waiting,” and it’s all a delusion to say, “I don’t know His will, so I don’t have to do it.”
(John) Or, “I’m waiting for His will to change to be my will.”
(Martha) That’s what she said, yeah, right. And this is the verse I put in the post, “I’ve inherited Your testimonies forever,” which is His will, “for they are the joy of my heart.” I want forever for that to be true, and this, “I have inclined my heart to perform Your statutes forever even to the end.” And that’s Psalm 119:111. So, I don’t think I’ll ever be very far from this little book, because it is full of the direction, what’s it’s like to be filled with the knowledge of His will. I’ve always loved Epaphras.
(Martha) There’s only one thing about Epaphras is he’s named, but this is the one thing about him. “Epaphras, who is one of you, a servant a Christ, salutes you, always laboring fervently for you in prayer that you may stand perfect and complete in all the will of God.” And that prayer has become for a long time my prayer.
(John) Isn’t that the one that’s over my sink?
(Martha) Yes, but yours, that’s the Amplified.
(John) I put that over my sink.
(John) It gets… It has been there now twice for over years and it fades and then I’ll print it again, and then it fades. Can you read it in the Amplified? It is so beautiful.
(Martha) Colossians 4:12. I gave that to you to tell you what I was praying for you.
(John) Ohhhh. Well, no wonder it was so important. So, that’s why it was so important, because you gave it to me, and it has become something that I look at so much that I didn’t even remember that. But here’s the Amplified version of it.
(Martha) Ok, “Epaphras, who is one of yourselves, a servant of Christ Jesus” – Ahhh, he was in the will of God. That’s why he treasured it so. Wow – “sends you greetings. He is always striving for you earnestly in his prayers, pleading that you may as persons of ripe character and clear conviction stand firm and mature in spiritual growth convinced and fully assured in everything willed by God.” And you know, John, it’s interesting what he prays. First is to have the character and integrity and “stand mature in spiritual growth convinced and fully assured in everything willed by God.” He prays for the character first.
(John) The character to carry and to be a foundation for the will of God.
(Martha) Exactly. You have to have integrity before you’ll… and character. Willful ignorance and willful blindness is a choice to not know the will of God, so you don’t have to do it. This is, let me read it in the New Amplified, Updated. It’s very similar. “Epaphras, who is one of you and a bondservant of Christ Jesus sends you greetings. He’s always striving for you in his prayers, praying with genuine concern, pleading that you may as people of character and courage” – this has that word courage. I love it! – “stand firm, spiritual and mature and fully assured in all the will of God, for I testify for him that he has worked strenuously for you and for the believers in Laodicia.” So, I think it would be great to do a study of the New Testament on the will of God. It’s just, oh just the scriptures are awesome. “Our Lord Jesus Christ, who gave Himself for our sins…” – now this verse we ought to memorize for these days – “…who gave Himself for our sins that He might deliver us from this present, evil world according to the will of God and our Father.” If we’re in the will of God, we will be delivered from the evil that’s coming. So, see how crucial it is and how it’s the most important thing is to be in the will of God. “Paul always carried with him a very deep sense of the will of God as the source and the rule of all things.” If you go through the Epistles of Paul, you see he’s always talking about the will of God. He says, “I am an Apostle by the will of God.” Ok. What Murray says that, “We lose the spiritual capacity for delighting in and performing God’s will if we are subject to the world.”
(Martha) He says, “The great cause of failure in doing the will of God is simply a worldly spirit.” And after I thought about that, I could see it, can’t you?
(John) Umhmm. Absolutely.
(Martha) And the Psalm I read says, “I incline my heart to Your precepts.” And I looked up inclined and it says, “Extend, stretch out, spread out, turn, bend and bow.” I turn myself to the will of God. I bow to the will of God. I pray, I’m to pray for the will of God. And the will of God is so amazing. We, I can’t even count, I can’t even recognize all the blessings of God that’s He’s able to give by being in the will of God. And strangely those who’ve come among us who are not given to the will of God have to leave. Our connection to Christ is in the will of God. He says when they said, “Your mother and brothers are outside.” He said, “Who are my father and mother and brothers?” “Those who do the will of God.”
(John) Umhmm. Umhmm.
(Martha) So, the church is made up, the true church is made up of those who do the will of God.
(John) When I was thinking of that scripture earlier, I was thinking, “Being in the will of God is being in the family of God.”
(Martha) Exactly, oh, well put. Yeah. “Those who are led of the Spirit are the sons of God.” And Sparks says, “If you’re not led of the Spirit, you’re not in Sonship.” You may be a son, but you’re not in the Sonship. The Prodigal was son, but he wasn’t in the will of the Father until he got home, and then he had a party, and authority and blessing and restoration was given him. And that’s a picture of coming into the will of God, and the outpouring of it. God is just, He’s lavish. He has such… I see He has such delight to give to us, and we don’t get answers to prayer, and we think it’s God’s failure when it’s usually our failure to be in His will, so that He can pour out on us.
(John) And we can be in His family, and you know, you experience His love in there. You experience… Not that He doesn’t love you when you’re not, but there’s an ex…
(Martha) But you can experience it.
(John) Yes, it’s an expression of it that comes upon you.
(Martha) Umhmm. I think what I’m dealing with in light of this is that I am before Him to be willing for His will in ways that might challenge me.
(Martha) Does that make sense?
(John) Absolutely. Yeah.
(Martha) I don’t want to restrict Him by in any way from pouring out His will on me. And with all blessing and all calling there’s responsibility, and I don’t want to hinder Him by being unwilling to be challenged and to… As A.B. Simpson said, “He didn’t bargain on it.” God put the cares of the world on his shoulder. And I want to be ready for His will, which might be way beyond my vision and my desire.
The Blessings of Being in the Will of God – Episode #542 – Shulamite Podcast
Want to take advantage of the offer John mentioned? The book Thy Will Be Done by Andrew Murray, (formally titled: God’s Will: Our Dwelling Place) is available at LivingChristianBooks.com for an additional 10% off. Use Coupon Code: THYWILL10
We are absolutely free to refuse the will of God. He lets us do that! But we don’t seem to grasp the inherent blessing and provision and JOY that only comes with being in His will. In the will of God is an open heaven with everything that we need in great abundance.