I used to get so overwhelmed when I heard teens I work with or other people in my life say something along the lines of, “I just wish I knew what God’s will for my life is!?” What does that even mean?! How can we even know something like that? How can we, humans, know what God has planned for us? The simple answer is, there is no way.
I used to get so overwhelmed because I was making God way more complicated than He is.
When I first became a Youth Pastor, I was extremely overwhelmed. I knew that perhaps this is not what I wanted to do for the rest of my life, but this is where God has me NOW and I am okay with that. Having said that, I absolutely LOVE my job but I’m also completely okay knowing that this is temporary and this is where God has put me for now. I’m totally okay with that.
After I graduated from my undergrad, I was yet again, overwhelmed. Surprise, surprise. There are so many options out there and I didn’t know where to turn. I didn’t have the slightest clue if I was doing the right thing in pursuing my MDiv. The deciding factor for me was not getting into the Social Work program, but I was accepted (with $4000 renewable scholarship) to the MDiv program at Acadia University. To me, that was an open door that God wanted me to walk through. I never really saw myself in seminary before but I had to trust God and know that He knew what would happen when I walked through that door.
When I started school, I met this professor whom I love dearly and she talked to me when I was having difficulty settling in. I remember saying to her, “I don’t know if counseling is where God wants me to go. I just want to do whatever He wants me to do.” And honestly, her response has changed me. She said, “I really don’t think God plans our lives like a puzzle that He sets in front of us and we have to figure out on our own how to put it together.” I’ve been thinking about that statement ever since she said it to me.
It makes sense, doesn’t it? God doesn’t create us to throw us out to the wolves with no sense of direction. HE is our sense of direction. I believe there is a puzzle (from a human’s perspective) that we do have to figure out, but if you have God in your life, you don’t have the burden to figure it out on your own.
God has a plan for everyone’s life and it’s comforting to know that He knows that plan. The thing is, as a Christian, God wants me to trust Him and part of that is being okay with the fact that I don’t know what the plan of my life is, but He does.
So what does it mean follow God’s will for your life? To me, I’ve come to learn that God opens doors and He closes doors. The Bible says so. Revelation 3:7-8 says, “these are the words of him who is holy and true, who holds the key of David. What he opens no one can shut, and what he shuts no one can open. I know your deeds. See, I have placed before you an open door that no one can shut. I know that you have little strength, yet you have kept my word and have not denied my name.”
In other words, as child actress, Baliee Madison once said, “God gave me this (her acting career) and He can just as easily take it away and I have to be okay with that.”
When God is a part of your life, there’s great comfort in knowing that He’s in control, He knows what the future holds, and He knows the plans He has for your life. Of course your life has a purpose or else He wouldn’t have created you in the first place. Think about that. There may be a puzzle to figure out, but you don’t have to figure it out on your own. Let life happen as it will happen. God’s in control and He just so happens to know what He’s doing. I don’t need to know what my life looks like 10 or 5 or even 2 years down the road because He already knows! If I put too much focus on the future and what it may hold, I take away from the present and am no longer living life to the fullest by cherishing each moment.
There is a puzzle to this thing called life but I have God by my side helping me put it together each step of the way. God opens doors and He closes doors. And I’m okay with that.