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3 Keys to Wise Decision-making

distractions2Life is a series of decisions and those decisions lead you places. You may think it only affects you, but you’d be wrong. There is a thought process, however, that says decisions don’t really matter.

Something like, Why would God care what decisions we make? Even if I make the wrong decision, doesn’t God turn it to good?

God’s word does clearly say in Romans 8:28 (VOICE),

We are confident that God is able to orchestrate everything to work toward something good and beautiful when we love Him and accept His invitation to live according to His plan.

That’s obviously a distortion, but maybe you’ve fallen in the trap as I have in the past.

God cares what decisions you make and how you make those decisions because He loves you to the core of your being. Since you agreed Jesus is Lord, you don’t live your own life anymore. He’s completely and unquestioningly in charge.

Obviously, I’m not talking about God deciding whether you eat a turkey or ham sandwich for lunch, or you going to bathroom now or in thirty minutes. He’s not a micro-manager. He’s a loving Savior and Lord, and those led by the Spirit are sons of God (Romans 8:14).

He cares what decisions you make because there are consequences for not following Him. It’s not about punishment so much as it’s walking away from His perfect covering. Remember He works it all to good for those who love Him, and if you love someone, you allow them into your heart, life, and thoughts. To do whatever you want and then throw it back to Him to fix is not loving at all!

Sometimes you may do this out of laziness (I don’t want to put in the effort to seek God) and other times it’s to justify what you really want (I don’t know if this is right or not, but it looks like a great opportunity).

What’s it costing you to follow whatever looks good? What are you missing by not simply diligently seeking Him? It might cost you time, money, relationships, influence, setbacks, heartaches. I don’t want to dishonor God or throw things off track even if it’s for a season. There’s too much to be done–there’s harvest now!

To start from “it’s okay He’ll work it all to good,” you’ve already decided that it’s not about His glory, it’s about what you want. To maintain what you see as good, you will often compromise and/or flat out disobey to keep it going. You get hurt, people get hurt, and we all pay the price.

Here’s the point: grace covers, but we don’t want to trample that grace by justifying our selfishness in everything we do (Hebrews 10:29). There’s a better way–a way that honors God, brings Him glory, and doesn’t cost us or the people we love nearly as much.

So what do you do when faced with a major decision?

  • Don’t rush into anything. Take time to seek God and pray. Consult scripture and wait for an answer.
  •  Ask BIG questions. Why am I so eager to do this? What is my motivation here? What will it mean if I pass up this opportunity? How does this fit into how I’ve seen my future playing out?
  • Seek wise counsel. Don’t rush to the friend you know will just agree with whatever you’re thinking, find someone who can stay objective and will convey the wisdom of God.

How about you? What does your decision-making process look like? What would you add to this list?

9 Comments

  1. Waiting (simply not rushing into things) was huge for me to learn. I’ve learned the hard way that getting ahead of God has significant, negative side effects. While God does work things for good, He also lets us determine our character development by the choices we make.
    kari scare recently posted..Pursuing Encouragement Through the Holy SpiritMy Profile

    • That is it exactly, Kari. I’ve learned the hard way as well, but I’m certainly thankful for His grace in the process even as I have chosen poorly at times! Thanks so much.

  2. I’ve been down that road more than once… Excellent advice, Jason. I also think we need to step back and look at the scenario and how it is presented along with the wisdom of the matter, if that makes sense. Sometimes it seems like God is opening a door and other times it’s just the door to temptations angry face, to quote an old Bob Dylan song. Being to close to the forest blocks the overall beauty and position of it.
    floyd recently posted..SHORTCUTSMy Profile

    • You are right! Being too close makes objectivity completely impossible. Thank you, Floyd!

  3. I ask God to examine my heart first and to clean out stuff that would impact my decision making. Your list is awesome and a secure way to examine the process involved in any big (or small) decision. Thanks Jason!
    Jay Cookingham recently posted..How Sonship Shapes a Man’s IdentityMy Profile

    • That’s a wise step, Jay. We can hide things from ourselves, but if we can be humble enough to ask, He’ll show us the truth. Love that! Thank you!

  4. Such wise and wonderful advice, Jason! The questions you’ve posed for us to ask when facing a decision are some I’ve certainly asked and prayed in the past and am sure will do so in the future.
    Blessings, my friend!

    • Thank you so much, Martha! And blessings to you too. 🙂

  5. Great post, Jason.
    My husband and I recently had a HUGE decision to make about his job. We did all of the above before deciding to decline the job opportunity. From a worldly perspective it seemed ludicrous that we would turn down such a good opportunity but it didn’t seem to be what God wanted.
    It was one of the hardest decisions we’ve had to make.

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