GOD'S WILL is not something you align yourself with—it’s God working out His will in you!

Scripture declares that Christ’s resurrection power is greater than sin’s power. John says, “Greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world" (1 John 4:4). This includes he who is in our flesh. Greater is the Almighty God in my spirit than God’s enemy in my flesh. You talk about an altered condition!
Paul goes further in Philippians 2:13—that this Greater One in us is not passive, silent, distant, or dormant. Paul says, “It is God who is [present tense] at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure.” Notice that God’s “good pleasure,” in this verse is synonymous with GOD'S WILL and work within us (see also Hebrews 13:20-21).
In earlier years as a Christian, I completely misunderstood what the term “GOD'S WILL” actually meant. I thought of GOD'S WILL as either: (a) where He wanted me to go and what He desired me to do; or (b) in terms of a “perfection” that I should strive to align myself with. I never contemplated the scriptural definition in this verse: that GOD'S WILL is His progressive and continuous working in me. What a wonderful paradigm shift this truth created in me spiritually!
What does this mean in our daily living? Let’s start with what it does not mean. It does not mean that you are relegated to the sidelines and can feel nothing going on during your life. No, your life is full of positive and negative personal experiences, and you will often make decisions pregnant with consequences. The use of the present tense is in this verse tells us that the essence of God’s work in us—which is to say GOD'S WILL for us here and now—is progressive and continual. He is working in our hearts—layer by layer, and year after year—until we discover that we desire only Him and increasingly trust Him for everything.
So, what does this verse mean? The freedom-truth contained in this verse is revolutionary. It means that you can never fall out of GOD'S WILL for your life. GOD'S WILL lives in you! Is it possible for your flesh to rise up and act sinfully? Yes, we all experience this every day. But can this sinful action remove you from GOD'S WILL? Never! Why is this an irrevocable truth? Because GOD'S WILL is not dependent on our performance in living up to what we think He wants us to do (or in somehow aligning ourselves with Him). Such thinking comes from the Old Covenant mindset that we will discuss in chapter ten. In this verse, GOD'S WILL is referring to His working in us for His good pleasure. If we find ourselves in the midst of a sinful thought or action, God IS also simultaneously active within us to will and to work for His good pleasure.
I can still vividly remember my early days of struggle, when I chased the idolatrous gods of money and success. I sought after those idols for decades until I was burned out and could go no further. I didn’t know, at the time, that I was clinging to those twin idols in my heart and they were the source of my misery. But God knew. He knew that they were robbing me of true joy and peace in Him.
Could I change any of this by myself? No. Well then, was it GOD'S WILL that I engage in all of this degradation and sin, or be miserable, exhausted, and suffer through those many decades of hellish frustration on my own? The answer to this question is also a resounding no. But Almighty God knew, before the foundation of the world, every sin in my heart, every thorn in my flesh, every selfish decision I would make, and every idol I would chase. He knew it all and still chose to give me eternal life anyway. Why? Because He is the Greater One in me!
GOD'S WILL, according to Philippians 2:13, is nothing less than this patient and loving God “working for His good pleasure” in each of His children, despite all of the flesh and sin that we choose to partake of during our lives. After decades, He finally brought me to a place, by Dave’s bedside, where He could inwardly slay those idols. He gave me a first taste of tangible peace that changed me forever. Had you been observing me in those days, you would have seen nothing but a man’s energetic striving to run a business, yet God was performing His hidden work from within.
Does this mean that God’s work is now completed in me? Far from it! At the same time that God was destroying those twin gods of money and success in my heart, He was working on even more deceptive and subtle idols entrenched in deeper enclaves— hidden, remote, and protected—within me.
From the book, "A Different Place," The peace and freedom that comes from knowing: God has done it all—He is all we need, pages 93-95.