The search for God's will is like searching for your car keys only to find out they are buried deep in your pocket. In fact, to go a step further, it's like searching for your car keys only to find out they are already in the car's ignition. God is not far away, and He's been waiting for you. There's no need for a frantic search to find Him and arrive in His presence. This might sound strange because this is not how humanity views its connection to the Divine. Almost every human culture has an awareness of the other-worldly, along with deceptively simple to fantastically extravagant means for finding ways to slide between this-world and the other-world, to attempt to grasp God's presence, and maybe also His will.
According to Olson, the Holy Spirit is the art instructor, someone like Bob Ross (maybe even more than some would be willing to admit) and Jesus is the model. Well, more than than just a model, really, since Jesus is the actual image that disciples are to reflect and be transformed into.
This is not a new way to approach God's leading (what I like to talk about more than God's will). Sometime when you have an extra half day, read the Book of Numbers, or if you have only an hour maybe start around Numbers 10:11 and go through chapter 13. The people of Israel could have ended their travels by the end of chapter 13. They were there at the cusp of the Promised Land. They had arrived! But then . . . they balked. They chickened out. They didn't see the land as God's promise to be fulfilled but as a pitfall of their own demise. The people were on the right path, going in the direction God revealed to them. They simply did not trust God, for it is written "the people complained about their hardships in the hearing of the LORD" (chapter 11 verse 1). And so, the Book of Numbers becomes a story about wandering around looking for what is right in front of each of human face--all that God has given. Just step into His presence right into the future waiting to be lived out. Sounds crazy, it probably is. It never makes sense, probably never will. But how could someone live any other way and expect to be fully . . . at home?
SIDE NOTE: As I was writing this blog post, four (make that five) students in a row came through the office door looking for--you guessed it!--guidance. Three of them left with possibilities they had not thought were even possible. One of them left, saying, "Stop it! You're scaring me." (She was smiling as she said it, sort of.)
And, the path goes on, if we're willing to join God for the journey . . .