Figure It Out
I like watching mystery shows where you are trying to figure out what happened before they actually tell you. I'm normally WRONG, but they are still fun to watch.
In my opinion, there are two kids of mysteries...
There are solvable mysteries:
Who keeps squeezing the toothpaste tube in the middle (grrrrr)
Where did my keys go? (again)
What animal keeps eating the strawberries in my wife's garden? (Get my trail cam!!)
And unsolvable mysteries, like:
Where does the other sock go? (I don't know how many times I've lost one sock and can never seem to find it.)
How in the world did my kid get that much dirt in their ears? (Eww!)
Why do girls go to the bathroom in groups, and what do they talk about? (I probably don't want to know!!)
WHERE DOES GOD'S WILL FIT IN?
There are a lot of people who think that God's will is one of those unsolvable types. It's a mystery that they will never figure out unless God writes it in the sky! (in full transparency, I have prayed for that before...but I'm still waiting)
But that's not at all true. God's will for you, as a follower of Christ, is solvable. You can know what God wants you to do, and then do it. Now, don't get me wrong, I'm not saying you can know the specifics of each day and see into the future. But in a general sense you can know in each circumstance, relationship, trial, heartache, joy, pain, and victory how to know if you are in God's will.
Why do I think that? Look at what Paul wrote to the church in Ephesians...
For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light (for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness and truth) and find out what pleases the Lord. (Ephesians 5:8-10, NIV, emphasis added)
Did you catch that? Paul just put every believer in Jesus ON the hook to find out what God's will is for their own lives. He could have easily said, "I don't expect you to find out what pleases God, because it is a mystery." Unfortunately for those who are lazy in their faith, this means the responsibility is all on you.
In other translations, it reads this way:
(NKJV) “finding out what is acceptable to the Lord”
(MSG) “Figure out what will please Christ, and then do it.”
(NLT) "Carefully determine what pleases the Lord."
You have to find out/figure out/carefully determine what is acceptable/pleases the Lord. It's they only way you will be able to "live as children of light...".
HOW DO I FIGURE IT OUT?
The words “finding out” is literally, put to the test, to discern, to approve. This means that we are constantly testing and discerning our actions, motives, and thoughts to see if they are pleasing to God. Sounds exhausting, right? Only if you ignore the clues to help you solve the mystery.
You see, God has given us everything we need to lead a godly life that is pleasing to him (2 Peter 1:3). Any guesses what that may be?...CORRECT, His Word. Reading, knowing, and obeying God's Word is the only way to know/find out/discern whether what we are doing is pleasing to him.
And WHO'S responsible for you knowing and loving God's Word?....Your Pastor!
It's YOU. Stop depending on others to spoon feed you the Bible, and dive into it yourself. There's no shame in asking for help along the way. There's great value in reading it with other believers and talking about it together. But ultimately, you need to fall in love with the Bible.
You can ignore it all you want. But don't point the finger at your pastor/parent/friend/spouse when you don't know what to do to please God or how to navigate tough situations in life. My suggestion? Consume it as much as possible as frequently as possible.
There is nothing quite like solving a mystery. It brings a sense of satisfaction and fulfillment like none other. Don't you want to experience that kind of joy and peace in your walk with the Lord?
There's only one way. Figure it out.
Find out what pleases God in your:
Then do it. There...Mystery Solved.
God, I don't have all the answers. You do! You've given me a life-manual to read, follow, and guide me in all the choices I make. I want to walk in the light so that my life can be pleasing to You. Help me to love Your Word more and more each day. Give me wisdom and courage to follow and obey what it says. I love you. In Jesus' name, Amen!
What kind of mysteries do you enjoy? What mystery has completely stumped you?
Which area of your life is the hardest to "figure out" when it comes to pleasing the Lord?