Figuring out God’s call on your life can be confusing as a corn maze — especially when we don’t have all the rules and instructions set before us. Not like back in the day, in the Old Testament times. I bet Moses and the Israelites never asked, “what does God want from me today?”
If they did ask that question, all they had to do was turn to the book of Leviticus (and Deuteronomy). Twenty-seven chapters of what God wants, when He wants it, and how He wants it done. Would that make you happy, to be told exactly what God wants from you today? I confess I’d not be thrilled to told exactly how to behave, when, why and how. I’m much happier following the Spirit’s lead!
But following the Holy Spirit’s lead isn’t always that easy.
I have another confession to make: I dreaded reading and writing about the book of Leviticus as part of my “She Blossoms Through the Bible” journey. What on earth am I do with sacrifices of poor innocent goats and bulls, pieces arranged on the altar exactly the right way, burnt offerings, fires that lift pleasing aromas to the Lord’s nostrils? But then I realized that what God wants from me today is to simply be faithful to my promise to Him and to myself. And that means just showing up and doing the best I can.
3 Ways to Learn What God Wants From You Today
This blog post is part of my She Blossoms Through the Bible project; I’m writing an article for every chapter in every book of Scripture. Today is the first day of Leviticus! Like I said before, I was hesitant to even think about writing about this Old Testament book, much less pray about possible paths, ideas, even a series.
Instead of following my worrisome thoughts, I probably should’ve led with prayers and gratitude. Because you know what? That’s all God wants from me today. My time, attention, focus and love. And I have a feeling that’s what God wants from you, too.
1. Learn something new about Him every day
Did you know that the book of Leviticus is also know as “God called” because of the first sentence? “The Lord called to Moses and spoke to him from the tent of meeting. He said, ‘Speak to the Israelites and say to them: ‘When anyone among you brings an offering to the Lord, bring as your offering an animal from either the herd or the flock.’” I didn’t know that. Further, did you know that the first chapter of Leviticus is about gift offerings, not mandatory sacrifices of sin and guilt? The Burnt Offerings in Leviticus 1 are expressions of an Israelites’ desire to give the Lord something out of life, reverence. Gift offerings were voluntary, just to say thank you or pay homage to the Lord God, the glorious Yahweh, the Creator of Heaven and earth.
What are you learning about God? The first step to figuring out what God wants you to do — whether it’s with your life, job, marriage, kids or financial situation — is to learn who He is. Talk to fellow believers about Jesus, ask questions about the Bible, learn more about the Holy Spirit. You’re here, which is amazing! You want to learn more about the Christian faith and God’s will for your life. You want to follow His lead and listen to His voice…but you get confused. Lost, maybe. Scared! You don’t trust Him fully because of all the “what if’s.” I know, I get it! I do, too. But the more I learn about our Father by reading and writing about books like Genesis, Exodus and Leviticus, the more comfortable I am with Him. It can be the same for you! Commit to learning one thing new about Jesus every day, and you will start to hear what God wants from you today.
2. Look for God’s heart in His word and His world
Leviticus 1 begins with God calling Moses and giving him instructions for the priests, the Israelites, and life in community together. God was very clear about what He wanted His people to do! He laid it all out, from A to Z. The Ten Commandments, the Burnt Offerings, the Grain Offerings, who must do what job, what type and species of animal had to be offered…it’s all there, plain as day for the Israelites. God’s heart and arms were open to all. And that made life easy, didn’t it? Because knowing what God wants you to do is all you need for a happy life! You’ll never make a mistake or sin again if you know exactly what God wants from you, right? Wrong. The fact is that even though the Israelites knew exactly what God wanted them to do, they still messed up all the time. Because they were human, and because they didn’t have Jesus or the Holy Spirit.
See God’s heart in His word, instructions, and Son. You’ll always make mistakes, no matter how closely you follow Jesus or listen for the Holy Spirit’s still small voice. There are spiritual forces swirling around us all the time — not to mention natural physical urges, human weaknesses, flaws, distractions. We’re only human…but that doesn’t mean we can’t figure out what God wants from us today! On the contrary: God knows we’re human, He loves us deeply, and He doesn’t want to make life more complicated for us. But He does want us to participate in our lives, choose Him freely and willingly, and follow Jesus all the way home. We can do this if we know that God’s heart is loving, kind, and compassionate. God isn’t deliberately trying to trick or confuse us. We do this all by ourselves.
3. Keep your life simple and focused
While I wouldn’t want to live in Old Testament times or have to live by the laws of Leviticus, I do admire the clarity of God’s word to Moses. God really was on the Israelites’ side. He really wanted them to love each other, live in peace, and have happy relationships. God wanted justice, joy, peace and fair treatment for His people. He wanted the Israelites to be set apart and holy. He wanted them to love Him with all their hearts, minds, and souls. Life can really be that simple…until we complicate things and mess everything up.
What is preventing you from knowing what God wants from you today? Maybe you’re too busy to stop and listen, to pray and wait. Maybe you’re scared to spend time with Him, or you think it’s enough to go to church on Sundays. Maybe you love Jesus but don’t know how to approach God or what the Holy Spirit is supposed to help you do. Maybe you don’t fully trust God (which most of us don’t). Maybe you think you God should be different — or you want Him to be different than He is. Maybe you don’t even know who He is or how He speaks, which makes it even harder to know what He wants from you today!
Figuring out what God wants you do to can be confusing as a corn maze, or as simple as a straight line. You can make it simple by learning something new about Jesus or the Holy Spirit every day, looking for God’s heart in His Son Jesus and your own experiences, and keeping your life simple, focused, and free from the things that distract you.
What do you think about my ideas for discerning what God wants from you today? Your thoughts — big and little — are welcome below!
With His love,