This book will be in my top 5 list for favorite and most influential books that I read this year. It’s organized in 31 Chapters for 31 daily devotions for meditating on understanding and doing the will of God. In it he emphasizes and teaches that this is the very essence of true faith, the path and foretaste of the glory of heaven – which is a place of “unhindered manifestation of the working of God’s will.”
If we have no interest in enjoying and living in God’s will now, we will never enjoy heaven, and will have no business there since it is a place ruled by God’s will without hindrance.
He debunks the idea that the way to heaven is found in pious desires, religious duties, trusting in Christ for mercy and seeking to be saved from gross sin. Instead he emphasizes and shows us using Matt. 7:21 that the way into heaven is through “he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.” Too many have never allowed this truth to take possession of their mind and heart he laments.
“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. – Matt. 7:21 NIV
“True conversion is nothing but a surrender to live only to do the will of God.” He teaches. “It is the turning away from my own will, so as never to seek or do it again. It is the surrender of my will, with all its strength, and at all times to only seek and do that which God wills.” He calls us to use our self will with all our strength for the one great work which God created and prepared it to carry out: “to accept and to will what God wills.” This is the image and likeness of God for which we were created to bear. We are to use our self-will with all our strength to will and do what God wills and does. He calls this, “the noblest work the will of a man can be engaged in.”
One of my favorite chapters and paragraphs from this book was in Chapter 10 “The Man After God’s Own Heart.” He starts this 10th day of devotion referencing Acts 13:22:
“I have found David the son of Jesse, a man after mine own heart, who shall fulfill all my will.”
In this chapter he states, “If you learn the first lesson well – the secret aversion of your nature against God’s will, and your complete inability to overcome or change it – you are ready to go on to the second which is this: Believe that you have a new and Divine nature, expressly designed and prepared to do all God’s will.” If as son of God, Jesus Christ could do nothing of himself, even though he was son, neither can we we hope to fulfill the will of God by our own self-effort, the strength of our own will alone. We are too weak to bend our own will. We are unable to cast ourselves out. It is at this realization, when we come face to face with ourselves and our own will, blocking our way to God, that we cry out in utter despair:
What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? Thanks be to God—through Jesus Christ our Lord! – Romans 7:24-25 NIV
In Andrew’s third and final lesson to us in this chapter, he encourages us to, “humbly but confidently give yourself up to God to do all His will. Give yourself to Him, as a loving Father, so that you do not take His commands as mere law, but as loving will. The will of the Father will be made known to you in the loving fellowship shared between Himself and yourself. Look at God’s will as one great whole – the revelation of His loving purpose for man and for you. Set yourself resolutely, in the faith of the Holy Spirit’s working in you, to make it your business to do all God’s will every day. Then again, bow yourself in the deepest humility to wait on God to work in you.”
Absolute Surrender. There is no other way, to make the word of God, Jesus Christ manifest himself daily in our lives, through his word taking life and becoming flesh again in us except through Absolute Surrender. It is a call to die to ourselves every moment of every day so that Christ might live through us. Offering our bodies as living sacrifices. ed find the life God designed for us to live.
I pray that God might make us women after his own heart, that we might be able to sing and cry out as David:
I delight to do your will, O my God; your law is within my heart. – Psa. 40:8 ESV