A common struggle in the Christian life is seeking God’s ways and applause over our own, especially when doing so contradicts our culture.
When we come to faith in Jesus Christ, we’ve lived a good portion of our lives according to the rules of a broken world. But God clearly states that our ways and thoughts are not like His (Isaiah 55:8-9).
We must spend our lifetime learning to make His ways our ways.
Why? Because we want to glorify God by striving to become more like His Son.
"'… but he comes so that the world may learn that I love the Father and do exactly what my Father has commanded me.'” –John 14:31
Yes, our Lord Jesus is perfect and we are not, but growth in the Christian life and our transformation more into the image of Jesus is motivated by our faith. God’s perfect love inspires our desire to honor our Savior in all we do.
Learning to say “yes” to God’s ways begins with trusting that His methods are truly better than our own.
David—though imperfect—was a man after God’s own heart. So let’s take a look at how he learned to live out God’s ways through his prayers in the Psalms.
- David prayed that God would show Him the path of truth (Psalm 25:4-5).
- David acknowledged that his path was marked by sin (Psalm 25:7).
- David knew God’s ways were loving and faithful. Because of this he could trust God’s ways were motivated out of His desire for our best (Psalm 25:9-10).
- David trusted that God would make an everlasting covenant with those who feared Him (Psalm 25:14).
- David asked God to constantly test and examine his heart (Psalm 26:2).
- David desired to seek God’s face and ways (Psalm 27:8).
There are moments and circumstances when I don’t want to submit to God’s path, but I’ve learned to seek His ways above my own through this prayer:
“I don’t know what my motive is in this situation or my response to these circumstances, but I know this: I really want to be about Your honor and Your glory.”
This is the only honest way I can deal with my conflicting heart that desires God’s glory and my glory. But I know and trust that God’s glory is best.
If I desire His path above my own, my Father in Heaven will lead me in His ways, and He will lead you along His path too when you seek Him above all else.
John's travels for ministry behind the Iron Curtain led him to found East-West Ministries International in 1993. John and his wife, Susie, live in Dallas, Texas and have a grown daughter and two grandchildren.