Walking by Faith

Finding the will of God always requires faith for the impossible and a childlike dependence on Him. The Bible is filled with the accounts of men and women who found their destiny in the perfect will of God by doing things that were impossible for them to do on their own. Think about:

Noah and his impossible project: Noah was commissioned to build a ship the size of an aircraft carrier by hand! Yet he did it with God's help and grace.

Abraham and his impossible promise: At an advanced age, God told Abraham that he would have as many descendents as the stars of the sky and the sands of the sea. He did become the "father of many nations" just as the Lord said, even though, from a purely natural biological standpoint, it was impossible.

Moses and his impossible passage: Moses was 80 years old when God instructed him to bring approximately 2 million people out of Egypt and take them to a land that He had promised Abraham more than 700 years earlier. Moses had plenty of reasons why he was unfit for the job. Yet despite these enormous obstacles, Moses submitted to his destiny, obeyed to the best of his ability, and God did the rest!

Mary and her impossible pregnancy: A young girl named Mary was visited by the angel Gabriel and told that she had found great favor with God and had been chosen to give birth to the Messiah of Israel. Mary submitted to the will of God, even though she didn't fully understand it. As a result, she fulfilled her destiny by giving birth to and raising God's Son.

God has always chosen ordinary people to do extraordinary things. He has used men, women, young, old, educated, illiterate. But they all had something in common: Every one of them was called to be part of something much bigger than themselves. Because of their willingness to yield themselves to the One who had created them and allow His purposes to be revealed in and through them, God used them in phenomenal ways. Kathryn Kuhlman once said: "God is not looking for golden vessels or silver vessels. But He is looking for yielded vessels."

It seems that one of the common characteristics of God's will for our lives is that it is always impossible for us to fulfill in our own strength. But as we yield our lives to Him, He causes His divine plans and dreams to become a reality! God takes great pleasure in doing things through us that only He can do, so that in the end He receives all the glory, honor and praise.

4. There are times and seasons in God's will.

We can easily become frustrated if we don't understand that, just as there are times and seasons in nature, there are also times and seasons in our lives and in the process of fulfilling God's will for our lives. This is what Paul was referring to when he said, "And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart"(Gal. 6:9).

Years ago a group of senior missionaries came together to discuss life principles they had discovered from several decades of combined ministry experience. Their purpose was to be able to share this wealth of experience with succeeding generations.

As these seasoned leaders talked and shared their life stories, a familiar pattern began to emerge: They all had encountered common stages of transition in their ministries, so they collectively identified a fascinating five-step cyclical process God had taken them through. Here is a brief summary of the stages they identified, steps they all had taken in their journey to know and find God's will:

Stage 1: Birth of the Vision. Before anything tangible existed, each leader had a vision that was imparted by the Holy Spirit. In its infancy, the vision might have been general—but also very real—and brought an excitement and abiding awareness that were from the Lord.

Stage 2: Preparation. Following the impartation came a time of being prepared to pursue the vision. This is the stage where most of God's dreams for people are aborted because they refuse to do the necessary work. When God gives a vision, there must be some kind of action from us or that vision will never amount to anything more than a passing daydream.

Stage 3: The Wilderness and Struggle. One of the biggest misconceptions about discovering the will of God is that if something is God's will, there will be no struggle involved. That is a myth! You can almost be guaranteed a significant amount of struggle will be required. This stage is the proving ground of faithfulness and has no substitute.

Stage 4: Realization of the Vision. With this stage, they attained the vision. This is the place we all are looking forward to, where we can finally enjoy the fruits of our diligent preparation and God's faithfulness to us.

Stage 5: New Beginnings and Vision. They found themselves being challenged once more with fresh vision from the Holy Spirit, and they concluded that their lives had been a continual cycle of ever-expanding vision. As God entrusted them with more, greater amounts of preparation were required and the intensity of the battles they faced always increased.

5. God is interested in our journey and our destination.

Why are we still here? Jesus died on the cross 2,000 years ago and completed the work of salvation "once for all." So why doesn't He just rapture all of us so that we can be with Him? It seems clear that God is interested not only in our final destination but also in our journey, because along the way He does a work in our lives that has eternal value.

Many of us are impatient when it comes to God's will for our lives. We just want to get there. But in most cases, there is a great deal of time that elapses between when God calls us and when we have fulfilled His will for our lives. We need to understand that the journey is an important process that matters very much to God. The process of following Him in obedience—through many unknowns, trials and difficulties—is a significant part of our development and preparation.

God uses the journey to teach us faith, refine our character and equip us for the greater challenges that lie ahead and require more strength than we previously had. Even if you're in the process of seeking God's will right now, you are already fulfilling a part of it for your life: "I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go" (Ps. 32:8) is His will.

My friend, don't make the mistake of thinking even for a moment that because you don't know today what God's will is for your life you are not making any progress. Something is happening right now. Your faith is being stretched, your patience tried and your doubts confronted.

That struggle is part of the birthing process. God always prepares us in advance for all He has prepared for us. Though uncomfortable, it is necessary nonetheless. So get ready: Good things are coming for you!

Daniel Kolenda, a missionary evangelist, has led more than 10 million people to Christ face-to-face through massive, open-air evangelistic campaigns in some of the most dangerous and remote locations on earth. He is president and CEO of Christ for all Nations and hosts an internationally syndicated television program.

To hear the unique way Kolenda describes the power of the Holy Spirit click here.

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