How Can I Know God's Will for My Life?


We're called to seek and follow God's will for our lives, but He still uses our mess-ups. What's more important is knowing who our Creator is and letting Him direct our lives.

One of the questions I’m most frequently asked when talking with teens or college-age friends is, “How can I know God’s will for my life?” It’s a good question to ask at any age.

As a young woman, one of my greatest fears was “missing out on God’s will for my life.” I think I lived under the pressure that one wrong move would spell disaster, and God’s plans for me would all be thwarted! Now that I’m several decades into the decisions I made as a young woman, I’ve come to realize that God is bigger than I first thought, and my wrong choices will not collapse His grand plan!

Please don’t misunderstand. I definitely believe seeking to know and follow His will should be a top priority. But admittedly, through the years I didn’t always get it right, and He still amazes me by taking my “mess-ups” and bringing Himself glory!

I’ve found several things that are helpful when making important decisions, but the one thing that is crucial is to know God’s mind on the matter.

  • Basically, we’re told to look at how God operates rather than depending on our limited knowledge, line up our choices and smallest details of the day with His way of doing things . . . and then trust Him to direct our lives (Prov. 3:5–7).
  • Talk to Him! Lay it all out and let Him know you need Him to provide obvious leadership because you only want His will (Jer. 10:23).
  • Check out all He’s said about the type of decision you’re grappling with and if your particular question isn’t specifically addressed in Scripture, look for principles that fit your situation (Ps. 119:24).
  • Be willing to hear what others have to say. Don’t look for Oprah or Dr. Phil to provide you with the answer, but talk to a few godly friends who have a solid biblical perspective (Prov. 11:14; 24:6).
  • Consider how this decision will affect your ability to give God the most glory. His ultimate plan and determined will is to bring glory to Himself through your life! Let that truth guide your moment by moment daily decisions (Num. 14:21; Isa. 43:6–7).
  • REST in His sovereignty. He is a Redeeming God. Don’t be so worried over missing His will that you miss abiding in Him! He can handle this. Often we’re guilty of placing the value of our decisions above His ability to accomplish His will (Isa. 26:12; Rom. 8:28).
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