How do I make good decisions? What does God really want from me? Does God care about every little choice I make? The big question behind all of these questions, of course, is this: What’s God’s will for my life?
If you ask the average Christian in the pew and they will concede that they passionately desire to know what God is up to in their lives. They want to know God’s plan, His will for their Life. So they can better lead their lives. Yet at the same tyme they will admit their frustrations in seeking it, that their fears creep in saying they cannot live it. Or that it may be just too hard to find. And if you ask them again what they think that will be they will utter several self-doubting answers.
“Seek first the kingdom of God…” Matthew 6:33-34
Asking the question, what does God want me to do, is the starting point, and the focus of the will of God! In the quest to understand petitionary prayer continues as I share one more ides about God’s will. While trying to figure out what to make my wife & me for dinner the other night, I caught an image that helped me understand His will more than ever before.
Men Are Like Waffles; God’s Will Is Like Spaghetti.
Of course, food metaphors abounded, but I asked people to really think deeper. It’s funny since it’s been a few weeks or so after listening to Bill & Pam Farrell’s’ book Men Are Like Waffles, Women Are Like Spaghetti? Yes I know Audio books are for lazy people, but it was free & I’m frugal! Us men our brains are literally like waffles, we (men) like to work in compartments, finish a task move on; finish a conversation, move on; deal with something move on. Not so, from my experience, with women. You could be having 4 conversations at once, dealing with 3 crises, and working on 7 projects . . . Not that one is better than the other; it’s just how we operate.
But God’s will is figuratively like spaghetti, but I suppose it’s also literal. God’s like a big, ole, mile long buffet of spaghetti. If he were like a waffle, think about how long we’d have to wait in line to pray. I haven’t lost my mind entirely; hang with me. God’s will is exactly the same, yet entirely different While in the shower today, I caught an image that helped me understand His will more than ever before now I’ll use spaghetti as an illustration.
- God is cooking dinner. No matter what, dinner is happening today. He will ask some of us to help, but his plan is not contingent upon our participation. Regardless of our cooperation, dinner will be served. If He’s going to do the work anyway, why help? We can bond. Our relationship will be strengthened. He’ll be happy that someone is offering to lend a hand. This is God’s providential will.
- In order for spaghetti to be spaghetti, you need noodles and red sauce. If you remove the noodles or the tomato sauce, it’s not longer spaghetti. This is God’s moral will. Think of the 10 commandments – they’re always the same… unchanging. Like it or not, spaghetti is spaghetti, and that’s what God is serving for dinner.
- God’s personal will is where petitionary prayer begins to shine. Dinner is served. We all have a big ole plate of the best spaghetti ever; however God didn’t sprinkle parmesan on top. When I ask for fresh parm, I’m tapping into God’s personal will. If he has some in the fridge, he’ll give it to me. If I ask for Blue Cheese, God will probably be like, “Umm, no. That is disgusting and you may not ruin this Holy spaghetti with that rancid cheese.” All we have to do is ask. If it doesn’t ruin the meal He’s prepared, don’t you think he’ll allow us to have it?
In some areas of life it’s clear that there are right decisions and wrong decisions—like the choice of whether to sprinkle Parmesan, or Blue Cheese? In other areas, we need to make choices between two good things—like making a decision between two great churches to join? It’s quite possible God would be present in and honored by either decision. Other tymes the choice may have to do with a gray area—something that’s not necessarily right or wrong.
Also, we need to remember God is our Father. God is not here to condemn us, but to help us become more like Christ. If we are focused on Jesus, and on holiness, some of those other things will fall into place. We’ll repeatedly find ourselves trying to solve million piece puzzles when we rarely get to see more than a dozen pieces. We walk in a constant fog, making life and death decisions, knowing nearly nothing. So whenever the Almighty reveals his mind, we should erupt with the joy of a man lost in a minefield suddenly finding a marked trail. At last the light has shone. At last infinite knowledge has reached us in infinite love. We should rush to obey, treasuring the slightest hint of God’s will, like the last drop of water in a desert. Or the final slurp of spaghetti & sauce or waffle & syrup! And the church said