Here are 3 signs God is truly saying, “Yes, I want you to do that.”
What is the “that” in this statement? That’s between you and God.
These three points are not meant to be a prophesy over your future but rather these are principles that you can apply to help you figure out what God is saying.
1. God Is Saying “Yes” and Wants You to Do “That” If It’s Biblical and It’s What You Want to Do
When something is biblically required, it’s clear that God wants you to do this.
However, there are many things in Scripture that are simply biblically allowed rather than required. Marriage is a great example of this. You are free to get married but you are also free to not get married (1 Corinthians 7:36-38).
Additionally, much of the commands in the Bible tell you what to do but they often don’t tell you how often or how much you need to do these things. For example, throughout Scripture, we are told to financially support the local church and useful ministries (Galatians 6:6). However, there is not a biblical mandate in the New Testament that tells Christians how often they should give or how much they should give. The 10% tithe is simply a helpful pattern many Christians still follow that we see from the Old Testament but it’s not a New Testament command.
When it comes to questions like these, there are two main ingredients to knowing for certain what God is telling you to do. First, make sure it’s generally a biblical thing to do (like marriage and giving). Second, you need to be honest about your own desires (1 Corinthians 16:12).
For example, when it comes to marriage, Paul says you should only get married when you want to (1 Corinthians 7:36-38). Even though marriage is biblical, God isn’t calling you to marry someone if you don’t want to marry them. But if you want to marry them and the relationship is biblical, this usually means God is telling you to marry them.
Likewise, when it comes to giving, which is biblical, Paul said, “Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver” (2 Corinthians 9:7). Thus, if you have a number in your mind that you want to give to a ministry, God is probably telling you to give it. If don’t want to do it, then don’t do it until you want to.
This principle applies to much of life. If something is biblical and you want to do it, usually God is saying, “Yes, I want you to do that.”
2. If You Can Do This and Someone Else Really Needs You to Do It, Usually God Is Saying, “Yes, I Want You to Do That”
There’s certainly a danger in over-applying the advice I gave in point 1. Sometimes God will lead you to do things you don’t necessarily want to do. Sacrifice is very biblical. Sometimes we don’t want to make sacrifices but God will tell us to do this anyways. So how can you know what God is saying in instances like this?
Here again we have two main ingredients we should look for. First, we should look at our own ability to actually do this thing we are considering doing. When God truly calls you, he will also equip you (1 Peter 4:10-11).
For example, if you are considering adopting a child, do you have a stable enough life, enough money, and the willingness to raise a child? If you don’t, then you are not called to adopt. Some people are simply not equipped to be parents and shouldn’t choose to adopt. But if you do have the life, resources, and willingness to do this, then that is a great sign God might be telling you to do that.
Second, you should consider the needs of others. Some people want you to do something but they don’t truly need it. However, sometimes needs arise that are truly life and death.
For example, if there was a child in your distant family who lost their parents and you were the only one in the family who could adopt them, that would be a real need. If you didn’t have the capability to adopt them, then the need should not force you to do it. But if the need was there and you had the means to do it, this would be a good sign God is telling you to do this.
Or like the parable of the good Samaritan who saw a man “half dead” on the side of the road (Luke 10:30), he had the means and the moral demand to assist; so God was clearly calling the Samaritan to do just that.
Galatians 6:10, “So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith.” If there is a serious need that others have and you have the ability to assist these people, this is an “opportunity”; thus, this is a great sign God is saying, “Yes, I want you to do that.”
3. If You’ve Been Asking For This Opportunity and The Door Finally Opens, This Is Usually a Great Sign God Is Saying, “Yes, I Want You to Do That”
When Paul prayed for something and then received the opportunity to do it, he routinely equated this with God’s will for him (1 Corinthians 16:7-9). Likewise, when he prayed for something but the doors were closed, he equated this as not God’s will for him (Acts 16:6-10).
So if you’ve been praying about something and now you have the chance to do this thing you’ve been praying about, usually this means God does want you to do this.