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[updated: 5/20/19]

Why do we have such a hard time discerning God’s will in the midst of our circumstances? Because when we’re trying to discern God’s will that way, we’re focused on the question or problem at hand. God is not.

I didn’t say God doesn’t care about your problems; but…

Your problem isn’t God’s problem, because He has no problems.

Your question isn’t God’s question because He is the Answer. He’s the great I Am and He doesn’t want you living your life with your eyes focused on your circumstances. He wants you living life with your eyes on Him and His kingdom!

If you had to chose, which focus do you really want to live with?

  1. God and His kingdom
  2. Your problems and questions

Where is Your Focus?

In our multitasking workaholism, we like to pride ourselves on how many plates we can keep spinning. We brag (though we act like we’re complaining) about how many hours we have to work (or study) each week.

On top of that we workout, wash the car, volunteer for community service and attend a Bible study. And that’s just on Monday.

But despite our impressive circus act, we can only accurately focus on a couple things at once.

Speaking of spinning plates, let’s imagine a plate-spinning performer taking the center ring under the big top. Can you see him wowing the crowd? Can you smell the popcorn? Can you feel the energy mount as the ringmaster narrates the drama over distorted loudspeakers?

Now let’s take a picture. What do you want to focus on? If you want to zoom in and capture the grimacing face of our balancing clown, sweat beading on his brow as he strains to hold everything together, the audience behind him will appear as mere shades of color. However, if you want to catch the faces of the fans – perhaps one astonished, one grinning ear to ear, one yelling, “Don’t let any fall!” – then the clown in the foreground is going to be as blurred as his spinning plates.

That’s how it is with your spiritual focus.

If your attention is riveted on a pressing problem, God is going to appear distant, in the background of your life. And that’s why you’ll feel such deep desperation. You literally can’t see God because of your focus.

But when you readjust your spiritual focus to see the face of the God who’s never astonished by the trials that befall you, never amused with your situation, nor fretting over possible solutions, then your actual circumstances will become less overwhelming.

It’s why the Psalmist says (in Psalm 34:3), “Magnify the Lord with me!” In other words, let’s make God look bigger by focusing the lens of our heart on Him, so that our circumstances won’t appear so immense anymore.

I will bless the Lord at all times;
His praise shall continually be in my mouth.
My soul will make its boast in the Lord;
The humble will hear it and rejoice.
O magnify the Lord with me,
And let us exalt His name together.

I sought the Lord, and He answered me,
And delivered me from all my fears.
They looked to Him and were radiant,
And their faces will never be ashamed.
This poor man cried, and the Lord heard him
And saved him out of all his troubles.
The angel of the Lord encamps around those who fear Him,
And rescues them

O taste and see that the Lord is good;
How blessed is the man who takes refuge in Him!
O fear the Lord, you His saints;
For to those who fear Him there is no want.
Psalm 34:1-9 (NASV)


  • What are all the actions this one passage encourages us to do (they’ve been bolded)?
  • What are all the benefits this one passage promises for those who carry out these actions (they’ve been italicized)?
  • How could this perspective change how you date and relate to others?
[Want more help in finding God’s will? This is an excerpt of the 2nd book in our discipleship series: Beyond Sex & Salvation. So seriously consider purchasing a digital copy and you will learn three key life disciplines for relational success; habits best best forged BEFORE you fall in love. Even before you date! Find out more or purchase the book at this link.]

DNA: It’s What’s For Dating

Dug this weekend’s DNA? Be a good friend and share with your friends on the social media platform of choice: Instagram, Youtube, Facebook, or Twitter.

The LoveEd discipleship series, Beyond Sex & Salvation, will empower you to prepare for relational success when it counts: BEFORE you fall in love!

It’s NOT for couples, but for any wise individual who thinks they might want to get married sometime before they die. And would like to learn how to better build healthy relationships in the meantime.

Check out all three study guides in our store. You can walk through them on your own, but it’s more fun with friends (that and it kinda makes sense to grow in relational success in actual relationships with others), so consider putting together an FMU LoveEd small group study.

Even better? And ask a rock star married couple you respect to lead it!

[originally published: June 13, 2013]