“Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know” (Jer 33:3)
Figuring out what God wants us to do can be difficult at times. However, since the Lord does want us to know His will [see last blog], we can discern what it is. Often we wish God would just put a letter in the mail so we could know! But God doesn’t work that way. I think God doesn’t always answer our prayers right away primarily because He wants us to come to Him—to see our need of Him, to worship Him, and to promote intimacy with Him.
But suppose you have sought His will and you still don’t know? Here are…
6 Hindrances in Discerning God’s Will
Unconfessed sin blocks communication with God (Ps 66:18). Sometimes though, we’re unaware that we are displeasing God in an area. He often uses our time of seeking direction to reveal these areas so we can address them.
2. Lack of Submission
Do we really want to know God’s will, or are we just trying to get Him to approve of our will? Ouch!
Often, we don’t even realize that’s what we’re doing. Strong feelings interfere with clear thinking. I’m an emotional yoyo—I know how underlying fears prevent us from recognizing God’s leading.
Thoughts like: “That’s too hard!” “I’m not qualified!” Or simply “I don’t want to!” permeate our hearts.
Since I am highly emotional, I literally have to beg God to help me lay my feelings and desires on the altar, but the results are worth it.
3. Fear of Wrongly Discerning God’s Will
This one used to plague me. Gratefully, God showed me that if I do my best in sincerely seeking His will and obey what He does show me (=submission)—I need not fear.
Even if we make a mistake He will forgive and even use them in the big scheme of things. Besides, just because we encounter obstacles or something doesn’t turn out the way we thought, doesn’t necessarily mean we made a mistake!
4. Not Applying What God has Revealed
If you’re not acting on what God has already shown you, don’t expect any more direction. That’s disobedience=sin. (Sorry, I have to call it what it is.)
Also, at least for me, we often want to know everything—all the steps, results, and method before we move. However, God is not obligated to show us all that—only the next step. It’s just our fear of the unknown hindering action. Ask God to help you put that on the altar too.
5. Expecting an Immediate Answer
We need to give God time to show us His will. We hate to wait, but in due time (His perfect time), He will answer.
6. Going at it Alone
We don’t always have to ask others for their prayers and counsel. However, there are many times when it would behoove us to do so.
Until next time, my friends, don’t let sin, pride, fear, or impatience get in your way of hearing from God! Let Him search your heart so you can know His will.
Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting. (Ps 139:23-24)
Scripture taken from THE HOLY BIBLE: NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®. NIV®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica. All rights reserved worldwide.