If our adoption experience has taught me anything, it is to be more discerning about God's will for our lives. Today, I got to thinking: When we Christians pray for guidance in our decision-making process, what exactly are we praying for? Are we expecting a sign? Are we waiting for God to speak to us? Are we asking for a feeling of peace? Are we looking for something that hasn't already been revealed in scripture?
No. Well, at least we shouldn't be.
Contrary to what some are teaching, we shouldn't be listening to some inner voice. We should be listening to God's voice in scripture.
Pastor John Piper has this to say:
- The Bible does not tell you which person to marry, or which car to drive, or whether to own a home, where you take your vacation, what cell-phone plan to buy, or which brand of orange juice to drink. Or a thousand other choices you must make.
What is necessary is that we have a renewed mind, that is so shaped and so governed by the revealed will of God in the Bible, that we see and assess all relevant factors with the mind of Christ, and discern what God is calling us to do. This is very different from constantly trying to hear God's voice saying do this and do that. People who try to lead their lives by hearing voices are not in sync with Romans 12:2.
There is a world of difference between praying and laboring for a renewed mind that discerns how to apply God's Word, on the one hand, and the habit of asking God to give you new revelation of what to do, on the other hand. Divination does not require transformation. God's aim is a new mind, a new way of thinking and judging, not just new information. His aim is that we be transformed, sanctified, freed by the truth of his revealed Word (John 8:32; 17:17).