You may be wondering today, are all of these trials really God’s will for me? Paul, who wrote much of the New Testament, suffered many trials. And so did Job. Because Job continually refused to “curse God and die”, and kept his heart and words right before the Lord, he was not only restored, but was given “double for his trouble”, while God sternly scolded those who accused Job. By the way, who asked for the privilege of afflicting Job? Was it God? NOOOOOOO! It was the DEVIL! But, God allowed it to show the faithfulness of Job, and to bless him even more.
As for Paul, thrice he asked that the messenger of Satan depart from him, and the Lord told him, according to my Greek Bible, “Enough for you is the authority of Me”, so telling Paul, “Don’t ask for Me to remove the messenger, I have given you authority, use it!”

Now John the Baptist was likely beheaded because he was offended at Jesus because he was left in jail while other disciples were free. It is written in Matthew 11:2-6;

“Now when John had heard in the prison the works of Christ, he sent two of his disciples, And said unto him, Art thou he that should come, or do we look for another? Jesus answered and said unto them, Go and shew John again those things which ye do hear and see: the blind receive their sight, and the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, and the deaf hear, the dead are raised up, and the poor have the gospel preached to them.

And blessed is he, whosoever shall not be offended in me.”

Where on the other hand, when Paul and Silas were in the prison at midnight, they sang praises unto God, instead of complaining. What happened? The angel of the Lord came and released them. So you see, our words bear much in what happens to us. Gripe and stay in the trial, or praise God and come out!

Another thing, when Paul was accused in court, he could have kept his mouth shut instead of appealing to Caesar, and he would have been set free, but because he appealed to Caesar, he was imprisoned longer. Acts 26:31-32 says;

“And when they were gone aside, they talked between themselves, saying, This man doeth nothing worthy of death or bonds. Then said Agrippa unto Festus, This man might have been set at liberty, if he had not appealed unto Caesar.”

And even though Paul got to continue ministering in prison, he could have had a much larger ministry had he been free. Was prison the will of God for Paul? I can’t see how, when God had such a large ministry planned for him. Sometimes we mess up Plan A, and God has to go to Plan B. Thankfully, each time we mess up, God has yet another way to bring good of it.

And, too, you may remember the account written in Acts 21:10-14;
“And as we tarried there many days, there came down from Judea a certain prophet, named Agabus, and when he was come unto us, he took Paul’s girdle, and bound his own hands and feet, and said, Thus saith the Holy Ghost, so shall the Jews at Jerusalem bind the man that owneth this girdle, and shall deliver him into the hands of the Gentiles. And when we heard these things, both we, and they of that place, besought him not to go up to Jerusalem. Then Paul answered, What mean ye to weep and to break mine heart? For I am ready not to be bound only, but also to die at Jerusalem for the name of the Lord Jesus. And when he would not be persuaded, we ceased, saying, The will of the Lord be done.”

Here I believe God was warning Paul through the prophet Agabus not to go unto Jerusalem. But Paul would not listen. Does that sound like any of us today? And so he went to Jerusalem and got in trouble. Did Paul fulfill the will of the Lord by getting thrown in jail? Or could he have won more unto the Lord being free? You figure that one out.
 I know I’m called to minister the Gospel. But I have the freedom of choice to sit home on my butt and never study, never pray, never minister to anyone. I could go broke from having no income. Is it God’s will for me to do that? No, I’m called to go throughout the world ministering. But the choice is mine, and if I don’t obey God and pursue the ministry He has for me, can I blame God if it doesn’t come to pass? Could I say it’s God’s will when I just failed to obey?
Yes, we must allow ourselves to be subject to the will of God. But in order to know if what we are really suffering is the will of God, we must search to scriptures to see what the will of God is concerning whatever we are in. Otherwise we may be duped into thinking something is the will of God when it is really the will of Satan. Now if Jesus bore all our sickness and diseases in His body, and the Bible says He did, then how can we say it’s God’s will we be sick? I just can’t justify that. I pray God’s perfect will be done in my life, but I also search the scriptures daily to make sure what is happening to me is His will. Yes, I may lose my life for the Gospel’s sake. I find many die that way. But it may not always be God’s will, some may get killed just because they didn’t listen when God may have told them to leave a certain place. Then people will say, well I guess they died because it was God’s will. God’s will may not have had anything to do with it. Jesus said the thief (the devil) comes not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy, but I am come that they might have LIFE and that they might have it MORE ABUNDANTLY. God gives us choices. And if we choose wrongly we may suffer for it. See Deut 30:19.

I’ve had people tell me they thought God was putting sickness on them to teach them something. I’d ask them, then why are you coming up here asking for prayer to be healed? Why not learn what God is trying to teach you? Why are you wanting the lesson to end? They see the stupidity in that when they read how Jesus healed the sick. If Jesus truly followed His Father’s will, and God wanted them sick, then Jesus would have been in direct disobedience to His Father by healing them.
I’m not saying you can “confess” your way out of everything. If the Disciples couldn’t, you can’t either. You must discern the will of God. If you don’t, you may suffer needlessly for it. Even Jesus asked if it were possible could the cup pass from Him, but He had also told His disciples, “for this reason I am come.” He knew He would have to die on the cross, but His flesh didn’t want to. Can you blame Him? I wouldn’t want to go through that!

What I’m saying, is, study God’s word, whereby you may know the will of God, and speak against anything that doesn’t line up with God’s word that is coming against you. Jesus said “occupy till I return”. You can’t do that if you’re laying in the grave, do you understand that? Don’t just be a pushover for the devil, thinking everything that comes down the pike against you is God’s will. It isn’t. God gives you the Holy Spirit to discern what is from God, and what isn’t. That which isn’t, RESIST in Jesus’ name. There will be trials the Lord will allow you to go through, that you may grow stronger. God does not deliver everyone “from” every trial, but rather “through” them. But you can know the difference.

For example, it is written, that God delights in the prosperity of His servants. So I can’t see how poverty is giving glory to God, or that it’s His will we be poor. I find, if I’m in lack, it’s because of my lack of stewardship, or a result of mismanagement on my part, not because God wants me poor. Again, choices, we all have choices. Day by day I’m learning to hinge my choices on the written word of God, and by doing so, I am blessed.

And if by my choices and my words I miss it, I cannot say my suffering was God’s will, can I? Hopefully, after we’ve driven off the end of the bridge enough times after ignoring the “BRIDGE OUT!” sign, we get smarter.