by Matt Slick
Yes, God has a plan for your life. Within Christian theology we talk about different aspects of the will of God. Basically, we have the decretive will of God and the permissive will. I do not want to become too entrenched in theological discussions about the different views (perceptive will, prescriptive will, permissive will, etc.), because it’s not needed to answer the question at hand.
However, we need to know that God does have a plan for all of our lives. You see, according to Ephesians 1:11, “God works all things after the counsel of his will.” This means that your life, all of it, has been worked out according to the counsel of God’s will. This gets a little tricky when we start thinking about the sinful things we do. Is that part of God’s plan, too? Let’s get into just a little theology to help us out.
The preceptive will of God is said to be his will for mankind. For example, he has told us not to lie or steal (Exodus 20:1-17). It is specific and direct. Yet, in his permissive will he allows us to do those things which are contrary to what he told us in his perceptive will. He wills to permit us to sin, though his will is that we not sin.
Is that confusing? It shouldn’t be.
So, does God have a plan for your life? Yes he does, and that plan includes your rebellion against him. God is not surprised by your sin, and he is certainly capable of working his will in your life even when you don’t do what he wants.
Sometimes people will ask if God has a specific will for them regarding things like who they will marry, what job they are supposed to have, and where they will live. Answering this isn’t easy because God wants us to prayerfully depend on his guidance and also make decisions based upon what he reveals to us in Scripture. We pray and ask for direction, then we pick one and go, hoping it is within the will of God.
So does God have a plan for your life? Yes. It is revealed in Scripture that he wants you to bring glory to him (Isaiah 43:7), not sin (acts 17:30), and trust in Jesus (John 3:16) so that you can be saved in your sins. As far as an absolute perfect plan in your life, well, the more you submit to God as revealed in Scripture, the more perfectly you’ll fit into his holy plan for your life.