“...that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.”- Romans 12:2
Whenever I think about hearing God‘s voice and knowing his will, I think of the movie “Saved!” In this satirical movie, the protagonist hits her head and “hears“ the voice of God telling her to have sex with her boyfriend. Whether or not was actually God’s voice is not debated in the movie; but for me, it’s an excellent example of failing to truely discern his will and identify what is good, acceptable and perfect.
So, how do you know God's will? In the chaotic world that we live in, failing to listen and discern correctly can be quite easy - especially in matters close to the heart. When we are battling the choice between living a life of worldly values or Godly (good, acceptable and perfect) values, it can be tempting to take the easy path. Which is why it is important to recognise this and make conscious effort to change.
And psychology can help us to do this.
Firstly, by recognising that there is a difference between the worldly values and the Godly values, we can test our values against God's word in the Bible and know that if it does not match, then it is likely not the will of God.
Secondly, we can be present with God; using relaxation and mindfulness strategies to calm our mind and be present with him.
Thirdly, we can use the Observing Self to start noticing when we are hearing God and seeking his will. This will allow us to observe both our inner experience and desires while also giving us time to hear his will. We can then use the Thinking Self to evaluate whether what we are hearing from God is in line with what he says in the Bible, and seek guidance from members of the church.
Lastly, we can use the Choice Point to help us choose to act in line with God's will, even in times when it is difficult and challenging.
I hope this series has helped you in understanding more about how to build a relationship with God and recognise what is important for both him and yourself.
- Written by Ashleigh Crosilla.