Ray McDonald's Blog

Thoughts and Reflections

Seeking God’s Will

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

16 Be joyful always; 17 pray continually; 18 give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

112015 Ray McDonaldThis coming Sunday – at First UMC in Laurel – we will try to determine How We Can Discern God’s Will in An Ever-Changing World.  During our spiritual journey – our spiritual walk – have we ever wondered what God’s will is for our lives?  I mean – how many times have we sought out God’s will for our life?  Passages like Romans 12:2 speak about seeking God’s will for our lives.

Romans 12:2 – Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is — his good, pleasing and perfect will.

The more we form our lives around the things of God (rather than the things of the world) – the more clearly we will be able to see God’s will for our lives.  Sunday we will look at one possible way – maybe the only Biblical way – to seek God’s will for our lives.

In the Romans 12 passage – Paul suggests that part of God’s will for us is to worship Him.  Romans 12:1-2 – 1 Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.  In today’s passage – Paul repeats the need to worship God – Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

Here is today’s passage in partial context – they are some final instructions from Paul in his letter.  1 Thessalonians 5:12–28 – 12 Now we ask you, brothers and sisters, to acknowledge those who work hard among you, who care for you in the Lord and who admonish you. 13 Hold them in the highest regard in love because of their work. Live in peace with each other. 14 And we urge you, brothers and sisters, warn those who are idle and disruptive, encourage the disheartened, help the weak, be patient with everyone. 15 Make sure that nobody pays back wrong for wrong, but always strive to do what is good for each other and for everyone else. 16 Rejoice always, 17 pray continually, 18 give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. 19 Do not quench the Spirit. 20 Do not treat prophecies with contempt 21 but test them all; hold on to what is good, 22 reject every kind of evil. 23 May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. 24 The one who calls you is faithful, and he will do it. 25 Brothers and sisters, pray for us. 26 Greet all God’s people with a holy kiss. 27 I charge you before the Lord to have this letter read to all the brothers and sisters. 28 The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you.

Can we remember a time when coming to worship or spending time before God in prayer or reading the Bible was not on our list of favorite things to do?  The Bible says that they are part of what we were created to do.  That must be why I feel so complete when I spend time before God – being joyful – praying – and giving thanks.

Join us Sunday as we share part two of the three part series on Discerning God’s Will in an Ever-Changing World.  You can listen to the sermons online if you are not able to attend at http://fumcl.org/sermons.  Last week’s sermon can be heard here.

Just something to think about today as you go on your way.

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January 7, 2016 - Posted by | Bring, Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Personal, Sermons, Theology | , , , , , ,

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