I’ve had two meaningful discussions lately with good friends of mine who were asking me to weigh in on their ponderings about their futures. They are each considering a vocational change, and they each said something like, “I’m trying to figure out what God wants me to do.” In both situations I listened thoughtfully (like a good coach), providing some thought-provoking insights (I think). And then I took a chance by sharing a quietly held musing of mine.
“I have to admit that I get confused when we talk about ‘God’s will’ in our Christian sub-culture. It seems like people believe God has a plan for them related to the three or four ‘big things’ in life (where to go to school, which person to marry, what career or job to choose, and possibly which house to buy). But it erodes after that. We tend to think that God has a house ‘we’re supposed to buy’, or maybe a car we’re supposed to buy, but we don’t think that about a bicycle, skateboard, tennis shoes, socks, or toothpaste. Pushed to its extreme it begins to sound absurd. Is that how we’re to live? I tend to think the journey of faith is not one of discovering a mysterious laid-out plan that God is trying to get us to discover. I think it is about seeking increased self-awareness and making good decisions. Good stewardship choices, if you will.”
That’s what I said to my friends.
For the record, I believe in praying for wisdom and guidance (James 1). And I believe that God is sovereign and works all things together for his purposes and our good (Romans 8). And I believe that God expresses his moral will through biblical directives, and we’re to be seeking holiness. But I’m not sure at all that we’re to be on the hunt for top-secret information. Instead, we’re to be good stewards of our talents, resources, and opportunities, leaving the sovereignty to Him.
What do you think? I’d love to hear your thought in the comments below.