God's Will For Our Lives

What true discernment might look like

Last week I had the blessing to attend a Parish mission in Providence, RI, and the speaker made a point that I think all should ponder as they discern the Will of God for their lives. Here’s what I got from the talk:

 

               We often find ourselves at a juncture in our lives in which we have several good options laid out before us. The options could be different jobs, different vocations, different places to move to, different schools to attend, etc., and we go to God so that He can tell us what decision we “should” make. When it is a matter of sinning or not sinning, we know clearly to not sin, but when it comes to big life decisions or situations that remain unclear, it can be easy to just ask God what to do since He is all-knowing and all-good. We should indeed strive to do this since God has our deepest happiness and flourishing in His plan for us; however, God has already told us His Will: eternal life! Here’s what Jesus has to say about God’s Will in the Gospel of John:

 

               “Everything that the Father gives me will come to me, and I will not reject anyone who comes to me, because I came down from heaven not to do my own will but the will of the one who sent me. And this is the will of the one who sent me, that I should not lose anything of what he gave me, but that I should raise it [on] the last day. For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in him may have eternal life, and I shall raise him [on] the last day” (John 6:37-40 - italics added)

 

                  God’s Will for us is that we believe in His Son, Jesus Christ, and gain eternal life through the Son. Boom - no more searching for God’s Will or wondering what God wants us to do with our lives. We are to believe in the Son and receive eternal life from Him. Now, obviously, that gets a little more complicated as we live life, make decisions, fall over and over again to the same sin, and figure out how to truly live a holy life. But, the point is that God’s Will for our lives is not some secret knowledge that we will eventually hear in a whisper during prayer or find in some secret book. Neither is it a trial to see whether we pick the right things in our lives that He set out for us to do. God wills us to experience Love with Him eternally in Heaven and to share that Love with all our brothers and sisters in the Mystical Body of Christ - and this vocation, which all human beings are called to, starts right now!

 

                   We often ask the Lord what to do with our lives because it is difficult to figure out how to live eternal life right now. In Jesus, God has shown us how to live a good moral life, how to praise Him, how to be in relationship with Him, and how to live a fully human life. God does not call us simply to do what we think we “should” do but to mature into the full stature of our free will in the light of His Grace and Love. God certainly wills us to do certain things with our lives so that we may flourish and help others flourish in this life, but we must learn how to discern His Desires for us through the tough and beautiful struggle of discernment. This is part of growing in relationship with the Lord. We must spend time with the Lord in prayer to know who He made us to be; we must make mistakes as we try to learn what leads to our happiness and flourishing. But, it is not a test to figure out the “right” decisions or to avoid the punishment of God - it is learning how to live eternal life now by our free will and the light of God’s Grace. And as we heard in this past Good Shepherd Sunday in the Book of Revelation - God shall certainly guide us as we stumble blindly towards His Glorious Light:

 

“For this reason they stand before God’s throne

                        and worship him day and night in his temple.

            The one who sits on the throne will shelter them.

            They will not hunger or thirst anymore,

                        nor will the sun or any heat strike them.

            For the Lamb who is in the center of the throne

                        will shepherd them

                        and lead them to springs of life-giving water,

                        and God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.” (Revelation 7:15-17)



              As long as we do our best to be the person He made us to be and strive towards the eternal life He wills for us, then we shall become the person that God has made us to be. It is not about just doing whatever we want in life but rather becoming who we already are in the Light of God. However, it must come through our own efforts and growth since grace works with us and not on us. Love never forces itself upon another but is always received. Be confident in Him and be confident in yourself. You know God’s Will for your life and you know the Truth that the Church teaches to help lead us in the right path. I pray that you all may be blessed with confidence and love as you run towards the Resurrection Light of Jesus Christ shining to us from Heaven in this blessed season of Easter. Amen.

 

2nd Reading from Good Shepherd Sunday - Revelation 7:9, 14b-17:

I, John, had a vision of a great multitude,
which no one could count,
from every nation, race, people, and tongue.
They stood before the throne and before the Lamb,
wearing white robes and holding palm branches in their hands.

Then one of the elders said to me,
“These are the ones who have survived the time of great distress;
they have washed their robes
and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.

            “For this reason they stand before God’s throne
                        and worship him day and night in his temple.
            The one who sits on the throne will shelter them.
            They will not hunger or thirst anymore,
                        nor will the sun or any heat strike them.
            For the Lamb who is in the center of the throne
                        will shepherd them
                        and lead them to springs of life-giving water,
                        and God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.”

 

 

 

Jameson Labadie

This 9th day of May - Year of Our Lord 2022

Feast of St. Pachomius

More News

The Struggles of the Human Heart

How to deal with Spiritual Desolation
April 5, 2022

One of the most common lines that I have heard when it comes to making important decisions in life is the following: “Well,...Read more

The Burning Bush

How We Become Holy Through the Fire of God's Love
March 21, 2022

In this last Sunday’s 1st reading, we had the blessing to hear Moses’ first encounter with the Lord in the Book of Exodus....Read more

The Subtle Lie

March 15, 2022

In St. Paul’s letter to the Philippians, he brings up the scary reality of sin, that those who give in to sin shall...Read more

Categories