Greetings and good morning, brothers and sisters. This is Dr. James Perry continuing with our series where we seek to explore the deeper meanings of our relationship with Jesus Christ. Over the years, the heavenly Father has shared many revelations of spiritual truth with me, and I want to share them with you. In today’’s broadcast, we explore further the ramification of seeking to know the Father’’s will.
And now, sit back and listen to today's message.
More on Seeking to Know the Father’’s Will
"Be ye perfect even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect." Matthew, Chapter 5, Verse 48
Brothers and sisters, as we make our way through this life, we are confronted with a variety of problems and adjustments we need to make. "Seek you the Kingdom of heaven and its righteousness and all other things needful will be contained therein." Sometimes there is great intellectual confusion over what the Father’’s will is, how we seek it, how we know when we have found it, and how it will help us to make our way successfully through this life.
There are those who think that a successful life is having an abundance of material things. But reflection should clarify this error. Man is more than just a material being. If he were not, he would not be conscious of moral or spiritual values. He would never experience anxiety or depression; sorrow or even happiness, since appreciation of these states requires value-consciousness. A successful life is not necessarily one that includes an abundance of material goods, though it does not exclude them. We can see right away that being mortal, we will one day have to part with the material goods of this life. And of course the supreme success is having solved the problem of transcending the mortal life.
But what is the Father’’s will? God is a spiritual personality and being a person he has will. Admittedly this will is eternal, absolute, and infinite. He has the power to exercise that will, to choose. And he has given us this same will, though ours is finite, temporal, material, and moral. With our will, we have the power to choose good over evil, right from wrong. We can choose to do the Father’’s will. The secret to surviving this life is to identify with the Father’’s will and, as a consequence, become eternal and spiritual. We do this by submitting our will to his will.
How do we submit our will to the Father’’s will? Submitting our will is a spiritual choice, a supreme desire to do the Father’’s will. If we desire to do something, our will makes that choice for us. In connection with certain difficulties in our lives, seeking to know the Father’’s will demonstrates superiority over our will as we wrestle with the problems of living and attempt to adjust satisfactorily to them. Seeking to know the Father’’s will does not remove the difficulty but it does provide insight that allows us to proceed the way the Father would proceed if he were facing the same problem; therefore, seeking the Father’’s will is really seeking divine wisdom, moral stamina, and spiritual power so that these can be applied to the problem at hand.
When we seek the Father’’s will, we are also seeking to become like him, to know his divine character. This intensifies the display of the fruits of the spirit through our souls. As we seek, his will increasingly becomes our will. Seeking to know the Father’’s will provides us with moral stamina and spiritual power so that we remain resolute in attacking and solving our problem, or, having failed to find a satisfactory solution, adjust ourselves to the problem. Let us examine a few types of problems and see how seeking the Father’’s will helps us to alleviate them if not solve them.
The Problem of Making a Living
We are mortal beings and must provide the necessary resources to support ourselves and our families. For most of us this means being gainfully employed at some task. By seeking the Father’’s will, we will be able to clearly recognize what talents we have that can be applied to the job we seek. If we only seek our will, we will miss the blessed technique of making three-dimensional decisions. (There are three kinds of decisions: one-dimensional, two-dimensional and three-dimensional.)
Those who make one-dimensional decisions act on impulse, without thought. These decisions consider only the present, disregarding past experiences or the consequences of the decision for the future. One-dimensional decisions have no depth or height.
Two-dimensional decisions require only superficial thinking. Here, past experiences may be consulted but future consequences are disregarded. Or future expectations may be considered, but past experiences are utterly disregarded. These decisions can be compared to a house that has length and height or depth, but not both.
Those who seek the Father’’s will are attempting to make three-dimensional decisions. In this kind of decision, the past, present, and future are considered. This correlation of the past-present-future empowers us to make a decision that is not only reflects the present problem but also allows us to look to the past for wisdom from past experiences and to use that same wisdom to forecast future consequences. In essence, the past, present, and future are considered. This kind of decision can be compared to a house that has length, height, and depth. A three-dimensional decision is subject to the Father’’s will. We can now immediately see the advantage of making these, as opposed to those decisions having one or two dimensions.
Fear of Living
It is only natural that we should be afraid of living. There are so many things that can make us afraid, so many things we don’’t understand, so many dangers seen and unseen. The brief pleasures we do experience are often punctuated with pain, suffering, and disappointment. We are not yet masters of all we survey. But we have come a long way from those distant days of long ago when "primitive man howled and lamented over each new sunrise.”” Primitive man constantly asked, "Who is tormenting me?" By seeking to know the Father’’s will, we arrive at the understanding that the universe is friendly, that the experiences of life are designed to bring forth slumbering potentials. There is no need to be afraid because our souls are indestructible and can never be harmed by the material ups and downs of life. Only our own choices of will can harm our souls.
Fear of Other People
Again, it is only natural to be afraid of strangers, people that we don’’t know. We tell our children not to talk to strangers, and this is good. But by seeking to know the Father’’s will, we arrive at that understanding that God is the Father of all men; therefore, all human beings are our brothers and sisters. And though we must exercise caution in dealing with those brothers and sisters who have turned their backs on their moral obligations, we need not be afraid of them. The Father loves all of his children.
Adjusting to Problems
As we live this life, it becomes apparent that we must sometimes make painful adjustments. Seeking to know the Father’’s will empowers us to make those adjustments. Though time is required to do so, with grace provided by the Father, we can make these adjustments. And the Father reveals the divine values and meanings concealed in such adjustments.
Fear of Pain and Suffering
We are all familiar with pain and suffering. Sometimes, we have so much of it that we come to fear it. Fear is an emotion that is designed to help us avoid further pain and suffering. But the emotion of itself does not prevent pain and suffering, so it must be discarded. By seeking to do the Father’’s will, we are endowed with courage to face all obstacles in our life. Seeking to do the Father’’s will defeats fear. It does so by imparting a value and meaning. We should remember that ultimately "pain inhibits activity and unfailingly institutes evolutionary changes and biological adaptations. Pain and suffering are necessary for progressive evolution."
Fear of Death
The greatest fear we can have is of death. The thought of our demise creates so much anxiety in our minds that we deny its inevitability. By seeking to know the Father’’s will, we gain a consciousness of eternal life. We gain an assurance that we will survive mortal death. Seeking to know the Father’’s will, the process of becoming like him, leads to knowing him. It makes available to us all of the personal values of his character and elevates our faith so that we become fearless and perfect even as he is perfect.
This concludes today's message on understanding more of the meaning of seeking to know the Father’’s will. We hope you find something in this message to ponder and pray about as you go about your day.
Until next time, this is Dr. James Perry