September 11, 2003

God's will mailbag

Thanks to all of you who have read my recent series of posts on God's will and have shared your thoughts and questions. Rather than reply in the comment box, I thought I'd bring them all together here.

Some of the words you used to describe the taste I've shared were "interesting," "thought-provoking," "confusing," and "freeing." I agree on all four counts! I think what makes it so interesting is that it's so different...might we even drag out the overused "radical?" Among my first thoughts upon absorbing it was, "If this is real, it changes everything." Well, maybe not everything...but a lot.

My initial confusion was more a result of trying to figure out how this new idea impacts my holistic thinking about God than it was an inability to comprehend MacDonald's train of thought. Now I'm finding that I encounter "micro-understandings" of God that have to be adjusted on an almost daily basis as I learn to live with this new "macro-understanding." For example, I've discovered that my counseling, both formal and informal, is peppered with implicit references to God's individual will. How often I've prayed for God to "reveal His will" to someone, without praying that He might give them wisdom! Shame on me!

Above all, this is certainly a freeing teaching, as Tanya from 7 Day Holy commented. That fact alone is making me approach it more cautiously. In my desire for freedom, I don't want to delude myself. I'm tempted to seek theologies that justify my desires, rather than theologies that manifest truth, to decide what I want and then seek Biblical authorization rather than to go to God's Word first and let it inform my choices. God, grant us divine objectivity!

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