During World War II Dr. Leslie D. Weatherhead gave five talks on the will of God to his City Temple congregation in England. Fortunately for the rest of the world, they were published with the title, God's Will. Every time I hear "It's God's will," I think of this remarkable little book and how it clarified God's will for me. A dear friend gave me this booklet shortly after our oldest son committed suicide, and I cannot praise it highly enough!
Dr. Weatherhead separated God's will into three parts:
3) Ultimate (ICU)
- God's intentional will is for our good. This is Adam and Eve in the Garden. When God created Adam and Eve, it was His intention that they live forever and be happy. But they sinned and were expelled from Paradise.
- His circumstantial will is because of the circumstances in our lives. It is within this will that we find God's permissive will. This is Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane. This is Job 42:2: "I know (faith) that you can do all things; no plan of yours can be thwarted."; It is the all of Romans 8:28, that glorious rod and staff of the grieving: "We know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose." I know (wisdom) I can (possibility) do (accomplishment) all things whatsoever He asks!
- His ultimate will is for His glory and our good. This is Christ's resurrection and our resurrection. It is us all in the New Earth.
As I read this booklet I was comforted in the fact that nothing falls outside the circle of Divine Providence:
1) the knowledge of God embraces it;
2) His power is sovereign over it;
3) His mercy holds it creatively.
The key here is God's goodness. The parent does not will evil for his or her child; neither would a perfect God will evil for His children. At the time Dr. Weatherhead gave his talks, the people in England needed desperately to know that there was a living and loving God in spite of the horror going on.
We need to understand God's will and its components before we tell the person prostrate with grief that "It's God's will." As I read this incredible treatise, I viewed us as being in God's ICU unit and God taking care of us as only He can do, no matter what our circumstances.
Thank You, Father, for being our Physician in Your ICU unit!