I know this is a subject I have written on a lot, or at least touched on quite a few times. If I have touched on it I don’t think it was in the context of free will. There is a great difference in our will and God’s will as our will focuses on the flesh and God’s is for our spiritual good. There are many times people act as if God is there to give them what they want, get angry when they do not get it only to have something better come along. We will look at each of these and examine them a little more closely.
What exactly is free will. Well it is the right to choose in any given situation. Do you take the freeway or the back road to get to a destination? Do you eat hamburgers or Chinese food for dinner? Do you do drugs or stay clean? Do you remain faithful to your partner or commit adultery? Do you give in to you anger and commit murder or allow the person to walk away and and allow yourself to let it go? Do you accept your gender as you are or accept an alternate lifestyle(homosexual, transsexual, bisexual, etc.)? All of these things are done in free will as they are all choices, and yes there is scientific evidence to support the last one so I am not speaking from only a religious perspective. What is not understood by many is how God’s will and our will interact.
Our Will is easy to understand, we seek out own good and sometimes the good of others. We do what makes us happy, our will is driven more often by emotion than logic. Quite a few people that know me will be able to tell you that I have a tendency to do random, and quite often crazy, things. After I have done something people consider “strange” yet funny they ask me why I did it. My response is always in jest: “It just seemed like the thing to do at the time.” In reality I do it to make people laugh, or try to. The sad thing is many people use this excuse when they have done something harmful to themselves or others, usually in the form of “They made me angry so I …” or ” I just gave into my emotions and…. ” Many times they will try to rationalize or blame others for their actions claiming they were not left a choice. This is our will, driven by human desires from a human heart.
Most importantly, we have God’s will. I will try to explain this as best I can, but it impossible to do fully because no one fully understands God’s will. The Bible tells us that his thoughts are higher than our thoughts, his ways higher than our ways. This is to say that the thoughts and ways of God are beyond human comprehension. What I do know is that God’s will for those that love Him and seek Him is only for their good. This means that what happens in our lives is done to help us become who we are meant to be, yet we can still choose to not do them. Our choosing to not do something doesn’t mean we end up poor or sick/infermed, just as choosing to do something may not bring wealth and health. God knows what will really make us happy and that is what his will is all about, giving us the joy we are always looking for in other places. Sometimes we superimpose our will over God’s will thinking “This will make me happy, so it has to be God’s will.” In reality, God’s will may be something you are afraid to do or even something you just don’t want to do, maybe even a place you don’t want to go. I have heard many people talk about how God wanted them to do something they didn’t really want to, but when they did it they were so touched and moved, experiencing a joy like they had never known, that they continued doing it until something else was presented. That is the will of God, and it is designed for us to fully trust Him in obedience because we know only good will come of it.
Do not mistake what I am saying here, obeying the will of God is not done without choice, it is all about choice. It would not benefit us to be forced or coerced into doing things. We must choose to obey God’s will, so what we do is by our own choice, done willfully and knowingly of our own accord. Likewise, it doesn’t benefit God to force His people into things, this only creates spite and disdain, not the love he wants us to have. Besides, why would a loving God force people to do things without choice. Because he loves us he wants us to choose, it really is that simple.