“I’m thinking of doing something different vocationally. I’ve been in a job that’s been OK, but I’m bored and there’s not much room for advancement. But, I just don’t know what the will of God is for my next job. I just don’t want to make the wrong move.”
I’ll bet you, yourself have sought an answer from God for any number of issues, from what college to attend, who to marry, serving in ministry – the list is probably endless. Here’s what we really want to know: Is it possible to know the sovereign will of God for our specific lives, before we make a decision? Is it possible to get a “peek at the script” for our lives with enough certainty to act on it?
I was sitting at Starbucks a while back, on a fine fall day with a young man about to graduate from college in the spring. He and I had met a number of times before when he was going through a crisis’ of faith over the death of a friend, but today he had a completely different dilemma.
“I want to know what God’s will is for my life. Is there any way I can know that with certainty?”
“Yes, there is I said.” But, what I was about to tell him, wasn’t what he wanted to hear.
Recently, I met with a young husband who has had an affair. He’s confessed it to his wife, asked God’s forgiveness and cut off the relationship. But there was still a problem.
“I still think about the ‘other woman’ occasionally and I don’t know how to make that stop,” he observed.
Previously, I had suggested fasting and saying Jesus’ name anytime a thought about her entered his mind. But the emotional memory problem still existed.
But finally, the Holy Spirit prompted me to ask this question, which I’ve asked other men in the past, even with “only” affairs of the heart, “Is there anything in your home or office that she gave you, or that ties you to her or triggers a memory of her?” After a few seconds he admitted to having a shirt she gave him still hanging in their closet.
“Get rid of it immediately,” was my advice. “Things can tempt us,” I said.
You may be turned off by the alarmist tone of my next sentence, but I mean every word of it. This blog is about a “Christian” worldview, which is one of the most ill-defined, fastest growing and potentially, most deadly theology of any I’ve encountered. And your children or grandchildren may actually believe it!
A few years ago, I served on Spiritual Formation Task Force for a local Christian high school and I was given a book by Christian Smith, entitled, Soul Searching. Under a major grant from the E.I. Lilly Foundation, Dr. Smith, a Christian sociologist, at the University of North Carolina and his team conducted hundreds of face-to-face and phone interviews to find out what American teens really believed about God.
His findings were startling to me. But the more time I spend with college students and 20 something “Christians,” even in conservative churches, the more I’m convinced his research is right on. And, his findings explain why the faith of our fathers is not the faith of our children. Here’s a summary of what he found and at the end of this blog are some questions to help you dialogue with them.