In the November, 2002, edition of Focus On the Family magazine, the following letter from Tyson Chastain was used:
One Sunday my wife and I noticed an announcement in the church bulletin about a men’s missions trip to Honduras. Through God’s providence, I went on the trip. Upon my return home, I told my wife that we should pray about going to Bible college and entering Christian ministry. She began to cry and said that while I was gone, she had prayed for God to give me direction. When I went back to work, I received word that my department was being dissolved. That evening I asked my wife, “How strong is your faith?” She simply smiled, “You were laid off, weren’t you?” Needless to say, we are serving God as missionaries to Honduras today.
Over the years, during times when I was seeking God’s will about specific decisions, I have often asked Him to “funnel” me into His will. By that, I meant that I wanted Him to orchestrate my life’s circumstances in such a way that His will about the situation in question would become obvious. For example, if He wanted us to sell our house, He could send along a solid buyer and make the deal easy. If He wanted us to buy a car, He could help us get a payment we could manage. If He wanted me to take a church, He could have the congregational vote go in my favor. You get the idea. Accordingly, when enough of the particulars fell right into line, I would take that as God “funneling” us into His will regarding the decision.
A.W Tozer once said, “When it’s God’s will, it flows.” This simply means that when something is God’s will for your life, you don’t have to knock, beat, and hammer it into place. You don’t have to kill yourself to make it happen, either. You can just get in the current of what God is up to and ride the flow. Admittedly, there are times when the spiritual opposition against God’s will for a situation is so great that the flow is more difficult to recognize. But mark it down, some degree of flow will be there.
That letter of testimony from Tyson Chastain is a classic case of God funneling two submitted Christians into His will for their lives. First came Tyson’s mission trip to Honduras. Then came his wife’s prayer that God would give him direction. Then came Tyson’s God-implanted desire to go to Bible college and enter Christian ministry. Then came the loss of his job. You see, there was a definite flow to all of that. It might not have been a flow that we would have devised, but it was a flow nonetheless.
So, are you right now trying to discern God’s will regarding a particular decision? I would advise you to sit down and trace the flow of what’s been going on with your circumstances. It could well be that for some time now God has been funneling you toward the choice He wants you to make. If He has, don’t fight Him. Instead, just ride the flow and submit to His will. And if He hasn’t been funneling you toward the right choice, then start praying this prayer: “Lord, funnel me into Your will for this decision, and give me the spiritual eyes to spot the flow of that will.” Pray that prayer and mean it, and God will surely take you up on it. After all, He wants you to do His will even more than you want to do it! Why, then, wouldn’t He funnel you into that will if you ask Him to do so?