By   •   June 15, 2005   •   Topics:


How can I tell if God is telling me to do something, or if it's the devil? I'm facing a major decision, and I think I know what God wants me to do, but sometimes I wonder if it's the devil trying to lead me astray.


One of the Bible’s most comforting truths is that God wants to guide us. He loves us, and He knows what is best for us—and because of this, He wants to show us His will. The Bible says, “In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight” (Proverbs 3:6).

But you’re right: Sometimes the devil also tries to guide us, and we have to be careful we don’t follow him instead of God when we need to make a decision. How can you keep this from happening, and be sure God is guiding you? Let me suggest three steps:

First, make sure of your relationship with Jesus Christ. Have you confessed your sins to Him and asked Him to come into your life as your Lord and Savior? If you haven’t done this, or if you are unsure of your salvation, turn by faith to Him and ask Him to come into your life today.

Then pray and ask God to guide you in this decision. Often, we want to tell God what we want Him to do—but ask Him to help you guard against this, and to seek His will instead of your own. We must be willing to do His will, whatever it is.

In addition, search His Word, the Bible, for guidance; God never guides us to do anything that is contrary to His Word. Seek also the advice of people who can help you—people who know God and have spiritual discernment. When we truly seek God’s will in this way, He has promised to guide us.

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  1. rick says:

    I can’t move on with my life. It is always the same thing from Monday to Monday. And it has been the same for 35 years. I have accepted Jesus since when I was a kid. I can’t find a way to liberate myself from this everyday friction. Always the same. No wife, no friends, no family, now will, no money, no success. Always the same, and seems to be getting worse…Honestly, I don’t even know anymore…

  2. KB says:

    This has been huge on my mind too. I prayed for God’s will in my life, not mine. I was given clear, joyful, exciting future plans all set before me. I was so excited! Doing a ministry for God. Then it all stopped and went away… I don’t get it. The devil knew I’d never work for God, lead me joyfully into believing I would…then pulled the plug to laugh at me. Why would God let him do that??? My faith is still there, but my heart is completely shattered. I’m broken and having a hard time trusting anything now. I didn’t know the devil could give an amazing false peace…the kind that only seems would come from God. I thought the enemy guided away from God, but apparently he guides to God then rips carpets out from under people.

    1. Bethany says:

      I’ve had that happen to me too. I was devastated :( God has something better for You to do for Him. And not to minimize the disappointment but even that has a purpose. Hang in there.

  3. Leslie says:

    ive been so confused as to what direction God is telling me to go. I’m afraid that I’m where I’m at now because I failed to listen to Him before and I chose to believe that what I wanted was His will and settled at that. This has made my life miserable and I’m so afraid that this will happen again. Oh, how I wish I KNEW what He’s saying to me now!!! It’s the most dibilatating feeling in this world!!

  4. Olga Bejar says:

    For five years my new husband and I decided to move to Texas without God’s approval. My husband had an illness that almost took his life. We had just gotten married and we wanted to make a new start. That is what propelled us to move to Texas from Indiana. As I was watching your ministry program, the preacher talked about making dissensions without the Lord’s approval. In that he gave an example of his life when he had to repent and listen to the Lord. Please pray for me and my husband that we get back on the right track, open our spiritual hearts and minds to the Lord’s will.

  5. Catherine says:

    Please pray for me… I am trying so hard to hear God above the voice of my own heart, which is “deceitful and desperately wicked” … I want to do His will and know He can align my heart with His. Please, please pray for me.

    1. chloe says:

      You’re not wicked. And neither is your heart. If it were, you would not ask us to pray for you. Those who truly love God and wish for his mercy and redeemption have already received it, for your heart and soul knows how pure you are before your mind does. Our hearts and souls are who we truly are and when your mind starts to follow, then your are truly within God’s grace. Our hearts speak a different language than our minds and it’s our minds that are our greatest weakness and enemy. No evil can come to you unless your mad lets it. You are strong in mind and pure in heart and my only prayer for you will be for you to realise it. God bless you and love yourself as The Lord loves you