I was listening to an early morning CBC Radio feed of the BBC program “In the Studio” yesterday as I did my wake-up exercises. The broadcast takes the listener behind the scenes as artists of various disciplines develop their creative works. Yesterday’s episode featured operatic soprano Danielle de Niese as she prepared for her London musical theatre debut of Man of La Mancha.
She told of her vocal and physical preparations and also of her psychological preparation. Before even beginning to sing a piece she found it necessary to fully understand the thoughts and motivations of her character – why did she turn her head, walk in that direction? What emotions are running in the characters head during this part of the story? Only after resolving these matters could Danielle feel she understood how to sing the part. She knew her character’s mind and heart and taken them as her own.
In a similar fashion knowing and doing God’s Will is not so much about receiving a “to-do” list from God – as if He really needed puny human help at all. Rather, it is about entering into a deeper and deepening relationship.
It is like the five-year old boy “helping” his dad in a project – perhaps building a garage or assembling a tool shed. “Here son, hold this nail in place… fetch me the ‘level’… no, not that thing, that’s a ‘square.’ Here, I’ll show you which is the level… see how it works? And the square, here’s what it does…” and on it goes. When the job is done the boy may boast, “Come see the shed (garage) me and my dad built.” And the father is delighted to play along.
Though the job may take twice as long, the real job is really what matters. The real job is not the building of the shed, but the building of the boy.
Paul agonized in prayer for the wayward believers in Galatia, telling them he would do so ”until Christ is formed in you!” (Gal. 4:19). They needed to learn to abide in the Mind of Christ if they were to know and do the Will of God. They needed to surrender their will to the Will of the Holy Spirit.
As Paul said of himself, “I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” (Gal. 2:20).
Note also Jesus’ own words, “If anyone’s will is to do God’s will, he will know whether the teaching is from God or whether I am speaking on my own authority. The one who speaks on his own authority seeks his own glory; but the one who seeks the glory of him who sent him is true, and in him there is no falsehood.” (John 7:17-18).
If you want to know the Will of God for your life, don’t seek a “to-do” list. Seek God. Know His Mind and Heart, take them as your own, then open your mouth and sing your song in His great story!
If you are curious to hear more of the BBC broadcast with soprano Danielle de Niese, click here.
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