Many times in life God will actively shut doors in your life so you are unable to move forward. It’s in these times where it is much easier to know the will of God for your life.
However, there are many other times in life when you will have the choice to do something that God does not want you to do. In other words, just because a door is open does not automatically mean God wants you to walk through that door.
So here are 3 things God might do in your life when he is trying to warn you and prevent you from doing something he does not want you to do.
1. When God Does Not Want You to Proceed Forward, He Will Provide Another Way Out
People often go against what they feel God wants them to do because they also feel like there is no other way forward.
For example, some people justify going into massive debt because they feel like there is no other option for them. But in a situation like this, if the person could move back with their parents to save money, go to a local college rather than an out of state school, or simply not live such a lavish lifestyle – these are ways of escape God is providing so this person does not need to go into debt.
When God does not want you to move forward, he will provide another way for you to go. 1 Corinthians 10:13 explains, “God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.”
2. When God Is Warning You Not Do Something, He Will Not Give You the Faith to Proceed Forward in Obedience
Perhaps the hardest part about trying to figure out if God does or does not want you to do something in life is to decide if this is a test of faith from God or a warning not to proceed forward. Throughout the Bible we have examples of God giving people impossible odds, like Gideon, so that he could beat the odds and show how he is able to come through for people who put their faith in him.
However, to run straight ahead towards all our goals like a charging bull and claim that we are simply having faith in God is not wise. Sometimes Christians are not following God in faith but rather we are being stubborn and trying to force God to do what God has already told us he is not going to do.
One way you will be able to tell which scenario you are currently in is by truly assessing if God has given you the faith to proceed forward as you trust him to provide. Internally we can often tell if we truly believe God is leading us forward into the unknown or if we are just really hoping God does what we want and so we will move forward anyways. When God is truly telling you to move forward, you will often have a deep and unexplainable faith to proceed.
When you don’t have this type of faith and you begin to move forward in doubt, this is when sin occurs, for as Romans 14:23 states, “For whatever does not proceed from faith is sin.” Again, this is truly between you and God. It is very easy to abuse this logic and claim you have faith when in reality you are just doing what you want. We should not accuse one another of doing this, but we should examine ourselves to make sure we truly are proceeding in faith from God rather than in doubt and hardheadedness.
3. When God Is Telling You to Stop, He Will Highlight the Cons of Proceeding Forward and Minimize the Rewards
While God certainly does speak in supernatural ways, while he does speak to us in our hearts through the Holy Spirit, and while God always speaks through his written and perfect Scriptures, we must not forget that God also speaks through wisdom. Proverbs 3:13-15 explains:
Blessed is the one who finds wisdom, and the one who gets understanding, for the gain from her is better than gain from silver and her profit better than gold. She is more precious than jewels, and nothing you desire can compare with her.”
When God is telling you not to walk through an open door, he will often communicate this to you through wisdom. He will show you how unwise it would be, what negative things will happen, and how many unnecessary temptations and risks lie ahead if you were to proceed forward. On the other hand, he will also show you how low the probability of rewards will be if you make this unwise decision.