Will is getting a bad rap among Christ followers.
We have busied ourselves in giving him up, blaming him for leading us away from God’s best. Countless times I have said (and heard others say) something like this: “I just need to give up my Will.”
He’s taking all the heat for my independent, sin-bent ways. The assumption has been that if I could put my Will away, then God’s Will would prevail. My Will was standing in the way of God’s, as if at odds with one another.
But today I read something from Oswald Chambers in My Utmost for His Highest. And now I’m wondering if I’ve been blaming Will for my actions instead of employing him for God’s purposes. Here’s part of that Utmost entry:
I cannot give up my will—I must exercise it, putting it into action. I must will to obey, and I must will to receive God’s Spirit. When God gives me a vision of truth, there is never a question of what He will do, but only of what I will do.
My Will is God-designed, God-given. I do not need to rid myself of it, but rather, to align it with God’s Will, for His purposes, His glory. I do not need less passion for my ways, but a greater passion for God’s. Pushing Will away doesn’t give it a chance to build some muscle for God’s glory.
No wonder I have been so unsuccessful in being free of my Will. It’s not going anywhere. It can’t be shrugged off or abandoned or starved to death. Will isn’t the problem. Will is the drive that will help me choose life (Josh. 24:15). Now that I am in Christ, I have the freedom to choose God’s way. My Will has been freed from sin, and I can now exercise it for whatever God asks. I get to merge my Will with God’s. That’s pretty exciting stuff!
My apologies to you, Will. I’ve not been very kind to you over the years. It’s time we worked together. Let’s get you in on the action!