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How to Follow God’s Will in the Chaos of Your Life

Jesus’ example in the Garden of Gethsemane shows us how.

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Finding and following God’s will for our lives often feels like a game of chance. But if we know God’s methods of revealing His will, we will see it—even when life feels full of chaos.

How to Follow God’s Will in the Chaos of Your Life

(Photo: Garden of Gethsemane olive tree. Courtesy of the Pictorial Library of Bible Lands)

Jesus modeled a life that followed God’s will without hiccups. His example at many points reveals how to stay on course.

His night in the Garden of Gethsemane shows us how.

Finding and Following God’s Will in Prayer and Scripture

Jesus told His men to pray so that they might remain in God’s will and not fall into temptation. Instead of praying, they slept while Jesus prayed.

In the dark Garden of Gethsemane, a sleepy Peter awakened with a start, jerked his sword from its scabbard, and sliced off the ear of one of those who came to arrest Jesus. The Lord’s rebuke to Peter revealed Jesus allowed His arrest—not because He was unable to resist (He could have dispatched more than 72,000 angels).

Jesus knew God’s will for Him and revealed the source from which He recognized it:

The Scriptures must be fulfilled. —Matthew 26:54

Our own lives too should be so governed by the Bible and prayer that we willingly tolerate confusion, struggle, injustice, and even death—if doing so clearly represents God’s will for us.

Finding God’s Will in God’s Word

The book of Proverbs offers practical wisdom as its primary application for us. Why? The wisdom of God existed even before “the first dust of the world” He created (Prov. 8:26). Because God created every speck of our universe in His wisdom, we creatures require that wisdom in order to live in the world He made.

The New Testament further reveals that the Father had delegated the task of creation to His Son, Jesus, “the wisdom of God” (1 Cor. 1:24; Col. 1:16).

Jesus’ life becomes a living book of Proverbs for us to observe and emulate.

The Citadel and location of Praetorium

(Photo: The Citadel and location of Praetorium. Courtesy of the Pictorial Library of Bible Lands)

Finding God’s Will in So-Called Coincidences

The same night Jesus prayed in Gethsemane, Pontius Pilate’s wife had a nightmare in the luxuriant Praetorium—today located near the David Citadel at the Jaffa Gate. She sent Pilate a message the following day the very moment Jesus stood before her husband for judgment:

Have nothing to do with that righteous Man; for last night I suffered greatly in a dream because of Him. —Matthew 27:19

Pilate recognized Jesus’ innocence, but political expediency caused Him to condemn Christ. Much like Peter who, in a moment of weakness pulled his sword to find a way of escape, Pilate also ignored God’s will in order to save his own skin.

Following Jesus’ Example

Through Jesus’ example and Pilate’s wife well-time warning we learn that God often directs His will for our lives through circumstances timed perfectly.

These “coincidences” work in concert with the Scriptures and prayerful surrender to affirm we should follow God’s will.

 

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