Pitfalls in Seeking God’s Will

Daily Devotional with Dr. Charles Stanley @ InTouch.org

Friday, January 13, 2012

Pitfalls in Seeking God’s Will

Read | Isaiah 40:31

31  But those who wait on the LORD
Shall renew their strength;
They shall mount up with wings like eagles,
They shall run and not be weary,
They shall walk and not faint.

As a pastor, I am frequently asked how to make the right decision in challenging circumstances. Sadly, I see many people make mistakes in this area.

For example, some people pray hastily for the Lord to lead them but do not listen for His answer. Instead they make their own decision and trust that He will bless it. But expecting God to bless what is not of Him will lead to missing out on His best. To avoid disappointment, we must be aware of several pitfalls that interfere with hearing His direction accurately.

First, be aware of fleshly desires. Wants are not necessarily wrong, but longings become unhealthy when they consume our thoughts. Eventually, we might believe that our desired outcome is God’s will, when in reality, we weren’t really listening to His voice.

Second, watch out for faulty advice. Even well-meaning Christian friends can lead us in the wrong direction. We should carefully seek counsel from those who walk closely with Jesus and are grounded in His Word.

Third, be careful when you are feeling impatient, doubtful, or pressured in any way. These emotions can lead you to make rash decisions apart from the Lord’s best for your life. Patience is hard, but His perfect will is always worth the wait.

Determine to follow God’s leading. Do this by cleansing your heart, asking for guidance, waiting, and listening. When you trusted Christ as Savior, His Holy Spirit came into your heart and sealed you as His child. He will teach you how to live a godly life—direction is yours if you ask and believe.

Isaiah 40

God’s People Are Comforted

1 “Comfort, yes, comfort My people!”       Says your God.         2“ Speak comfort to Jerusalem, and cry out to her,          That her warfare is ended,        That her iniquity is pardoned;        For she has received from the LORD’s hand        Double for all her sins.”         3  The voice of one crying in the wilderness:
“ Prepare the way of the LORD;        Make straight in the desert       A highway for our God.         4  Every valley shall be exalted          And every mountain and hill brought low;        The crooked places shall be made straight        And the rough places smooth;         5  The glory of the LORD shall be revealed,          And all flesh shall see it together;        For the mouth of the LORD has spoken.”         6  The voice said, “Cry out!”          And he said, “What shall I cry?”
“ All flesh is grass,        And all its loveliness is like the flower of the field.         7  The grass withers, the flower fades,          Because the breath of the LORD blows upon it;        Surely the people are grass.         8  The grass withers, the flower fades,          But the word of our God stands forever.”         9  O Zion,          You who bring good tidings,        Get up into the high mountain;        O Jerusalem,        You who bring good tidings,        Lift up your voice with strength,        Lift it up, be not afraid;  Say to the cities of Judah, “Behold your God!”        10   Behold, the Lord GOD shall come with a strong hand,       And His arm shall rule for Him;        Behold, His reward is with Him,        And His work before Him.         11  He will feed His flock like a shepherd;          He will gather the lambs with His arm,        And carry them in His bosom,        And gently lead those who are with young.         12  Who has measured the waters in the hollow of His hand,          Measured heaven with a span        And calculated the dust of the earth in a measure?        Weighed the mountains in scales        And the hills in a balance?         13  Who has directed the Spirit of the LORD,          Or as His counselor has taught Him?         14  With whom did He take counsel, and who instructed Him,          And taught Him in the path of justice?        Who taught Him knowledge,        And showed Him the way of understanding?         15   Behold, the nations are as a drop in a bucket,          And are counted as the small dust on the scales;  Look, He lifts up the isles as a very little thing.        16  And Lebanon is not sufficient to burn,          Nor its beasts sufficient for a burnt offering.         17  All nations before Him are as nothing,          And they are counted by Him less than nothing and worthless.         18  To whom then will you liken God?          Or what likeness will you compare to Him?         19  The workman molds an image,          The goldsmith overspreads it with gold,        And the silversmith casts silver chains.         20   Whoever is too impoverished for such a contribution          Chooses a tree that will not rot;        He seeks for himself a skillful workman        To prepare a carved image that will not totter.         21  Have you not known?          Have you not heard?        Has it not been told you from the beginning?        Have you not understood from the foundations of the earth?         22 It is He who sits above the circle of the earth,          And its inhabitants are like grasshoppers,        Who stretches out the heavens like a curtain,        And spreads them out like a tent to dwell in.         23  He brings the princes to nothing;          He makes the judges of the earth useless.         24   Scarcely shall they be planted,          Scarcely shall they be sown,        Scarcely shall their stock take root in the earth,        When He will also blow on them,        And they will wither,        And the whirlwind will take them away like stubble.         25“ To whom then will you liken Me,          Or to whom shall I be equal?” says the Holy One.         26  Lift up your eyes on high,          And see who has created these things,       Who brings out their host by number;        He calls them all by name,        By the greatness of His might        And the strength of His power;        Not one is missing.         27  Why do you say, O Jacob,          And speak, O Israel:
“ My way is hidden from the LORD,        And my just claim is passed over by my God”?         28  Have you not known?          Have you not heard?        The everlasting God, the LORD,        The Creator of the ends of the earth,        Neither faints nor is weary.        His understanding is unsearchable.         29  He gives power to the weak,          And to those who have no might He increases strength.         30  Even the youths shall faint and be weary,          And the young men shall utterly fall,         31  But those who wait on the LORD          Shall renew their strength;        They shall mount up with wings like eagles,        They shall run and not be weary,        They shall walk and not faint.

31  But those who wait on the LORD
Shall renew their strength;
They shall mount up with wings like eagles,
They shall run and not be weary,
They shall walk and not faint.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s