You no more recognize what is painful than you know what is joyful, and are, in fact, very apt to confuse them. The Holy Spirit's main function is to teach you to TELL THEM APART.
However strange it may seem that this is necessary, it obviously IS. The reason is equally obvious. What is joyful to you IS painful to the ego, and as long as you are in doubt about what YOU are, you WILL be confused about joy and pain. This confusion is the cause of the whole idea of sacrifice. Obey the Holy Spirit, and you WILL be giving up the ego, but you will be SACRIFICING nothing. On the contrary, you will be gaining EVERYTHING. But if you BELIEVED this there would BE no conflict. That is why you need to DEMONSTRATE THE OBVIOUS TO YOURSELF. It is NOT obvious to you.
You REALLY believe that doing the opposite of God's will CAN be better for you. You also believe that it is POSSIBLE to do the opposite of God's will. Therefore, you believe that an impossible choice IS open to you, which is both very fearful and very desirable. But God WILLS. He does NOT wish. YOUR will is as powerful as His because it IS His. The ego's wishes do not mean anything, because the ego wishes for the impossible. You CAN wish for the impossible, but you can only WILL with God. This is the ego's weakness and YOUR strength.
The Holy Spirit ALWAYS sides with YOU and with your STRENGTH. As long as you avoid His guidance in any way, you WANT TO BE WEAK. But weakness IS frightening. What else, then, can this decision mean except that you WANT to be fearful? The Holy Spirit NEVER asks for sacrifice, but the ego ALWAYS does. When you are confused about this VERY clear distinction in motivation, it CAN only be due to projection. Projection of this kind IS a confusion in motivation, and given THIS confusion, TRUST becomes impossible.
No-one obeys gladly a guide he does not trust. But this does not mean that the GUIDE is untrustworthy. In this case, it ALWAYS means that the FOLLOWER IS. However, this, too, is merely a matter of his own belief. Believing that HE can betray, he believes that everything can betray HIM. But this is ONLY because he has ELECTED TO FOLLOW FALSE GUIDANCE. Unable to follow THIS guidance WITHOUT fear, he associates fear WITH guidance, and refuses to follow ANY guidance at all. If the result of this decision is confusion, this is hardly surprising.
The Holy Spirit is perfectly trustworthy, as YOU are. God Himself trusts you and therefore your trustworthiness IS beyond question. It will always remain beyond question, however much you may question it. I trust MY choices ONLY because they ARE God's Will. We said before that YOU are the will of God. His will is not an idle wish, and your identification WITH His Will is not optional because it IS what you are. Sharing His will WITH me is not really open to choice at all, though it may SEEM to be. The whole separation lies in this fallacy. And the ONLY way out of the fallacy is to decide that YOU DO NOT HAVE TO DECIDE ANYTHING.
Everything has been given you by GOD'S decision. This IS His Will, and you can NOT undo it. Even the relinquishment of your false decision-making prerogative, which the ego guards so jealously, is not accomplished by your wish. It was accomplished FOR you by the Will of God, who has not left you comfortless. His Voice WILL teach you how to distinguish between pain and joy, and lead you out of the confusion YOU have made. There IS no confusion in the mind of a Son of God, whose will MUST be the will of the Father, because the Father's Will IS His Son.
Miracles are IN ACCORD with the Will of God, whose will you do NOT know because you are confused about what YOU will. This MEANS that you are confused about what you are. If you ARE God's will and do NOT ACCEPT His will, you can ONLY be not accepting what you are. But if your joy IS what you are, you ARE denying joy. The miracle therefore is a lesson in WHAT JOY IS. Being a lesson in SHARING, it is a lesson in love, which IS joy. Every miracle is thus a lesson in Truth, and by OFFERING truth YOU are learning the difference between pain and joy.