Second only to God’s Word, the greatest source of wisdom for me was my husband, Raouf Ghattas. So, today, as I write a Wednesday Wisdom, I think of him and the words he shared about knowing God’s will. Why am I thinking about God’s will? Because it’s been a topic of conversation with several in recent weeks, and because as I’ve moved into a different “season” of life, I find myself wanting to make sure I’m doing what he wants me to be doing.
That’s what draws me back to my husband’s words:
Learning about God’s will is not a long-range plan but a daily surrender, a daily fulfilling of his plan.*
Having been by his side for twenty-five years, I witnessed that in real time. Raouf faced every event, every “chance” meeting, every knock on the door as an opportunity to be Jesus’ voice and touch in the lives of others. From the taxi driver to the government minister, no one was beyond the reach of God through his servant Raouf.
The more lost people in a country, the more excited he was to go and serve there. Raouf knew the harvest was white, and he wanted to be among those gathering the sheaves. He was willing to go into a home in Syria to reach one who’d responded to a Christian radio program. Overcoming his own fear of being caught by authorities, God rewarded his obedience by hearing the words, “I’ve been waiting over a year for someone to come and tell me about Jesus.”
What did “daily surrender” mean to Raouf?
- Waking early to spend time in the Word and prayer.
- Looking at every person as a soul in need of Jesus.
- Pushing prejudice aside to love as Jesus loved.
- Giving generously to those in need.
- Being all things to all men, that by all possible means some would be saved.
- Calling sin, sin and recognizing and confessing his own as well.
- Being tired, yet pressing on.
Raouf knew God’s plan — that none should perish. This confidence in God’s love for the nations allowed him, in whatever work he did and whatever place he lived, to share the Good News of Jesus Christ with everyone he met. Everything else was immaterial. Raouf’s daily surrender to being God’s witness was God’s will.
So, as you think about God’s will for your life, focus on the essentials and, “whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, ‘This is the way; walk in it.'”*
Grace and Peace
Isaiah 30:21 (NIV)