Quote on how to know God's will

This might just be my favorite quote on knowing God's will...

"In his book Decision Making and the Will of God, Garry Friesen has done a masterful job of critiquing the view that God always has one particular thing for you to do in a given case, that correct decision-making depends on your finding out what that thing is and that if you miss it, you will only be in God's permissive will at best - and a second-class citizen in the kingdom of God. Arguing against this extremely harmful view, Friesen remarks,

'The major point is this: God does not have an ideal, detailed life-plan uniquely designed for each believer that must be discovered in order to make correct decisions. The concept of an "individual will of God" [in that sense] cannot be established by reason, experience, biblical example, or biblical teaching.'

So, the perfect will of God may allow, for a particular person, a number of different alternatives. For most people, for example, a number of different choices in selecting a partner (or none at all), various vocations, educational institutions or places of residence may all equally be God's perfect will - none being in themselves better or preferred by God in relation to the ultimate outcome desired by him.

The sincere seeker should assume that this is so and should move forward with faith in God if no specific word comes on the matter concerned after a reasonable period of time. All of this is consistent with there sometimes being only one choice that would perfectly fit God's will for us. Our choices must be approached on a case-by-case basis just as life is lived one day at a time, trusting God.

Just as character is revealed only when we are permitted or required to do as we want, so also the degree and maturity of our faith are manifested only in cases where no specific command is given. It is not a great and mature faith that merely does what it is told. Rather- in the words of William Carey as he went out to India as a pioneer missionary - such a faith is one that "attempts great things for God and expects great things from God." It actively gets on with the work to be done, the life to be lived confident in the good-hearted companionship of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Human initiative is not cancelled by redemption; it is heightened by immersion in the flow of God's life. People with a mature vision of God and extensive experience in His ways have no need to be obsessively anxious about doing the right thing. For the most part they will simply know what is right. But their confidence is finally not in a word from the Lord but in the Lord who is with us." - Dallas Willard Hearing God pp. 207-208 All italics are his.

And one more great quote for you...
"It is absolutely essential to the nature of our personal development toward maturity that we venture and be placed at risk, for only risk produces character... [We have all too often tried] to use our ability to hear God as a device for securing a life without risk. When it does not work - as it certainly will not - we begin attacking ourselves, someone else, or even God for being a failure." -Willard p.210

Life really isn't about trying to live in safety but it is about being free and secure in God's love to try, fail, learn and succeed. A risk-free, performance-based Christianity can be a real problem due to how it keeps growth from occurring and stunt God's kingdom from advancing...