God gave you a free will and the ability to make choices for yourself. Do not believe the lie that “things just happen” and everything in your life is completely out of your control. That is a stupid theology/philosophy to live your life by. -I am just being honest…
People often surrender their lives to others by surrendering their ability to make good decisions. Sometimes we freely do this because making tough decisions is hard. We would rather someone else make the decision for us than make it for ourselves. I find this very sad.
I had a tough life altering decision that I wrestled with recently and used the principles below to help navigate the decision process. I am sharing this list with the hope of helping someone else. Here are the steps I followed in making my tough decision:
-Research the situation and subject matter that is involved with the tough decision. Gather as much information as possible. Do not be lazy, do research and ask questions. Lazy people make wrong choices.
-Quick decisions are often bad decisions. If it is a good decision today, it will be a good decision tomorrow. If it is God’s will today, it will be God’s will tomorrow. If I am being pressured to make the decision today, it is very likely that I am being pressured to make a bad decision.
-Reconcile the situation with scripture. Will my actions line up with the whole of scripture and the teachings of Jesus? This is a very simple but profound question. (DO NOT pull one verse of scripture out of context; use the “whole” of scripture.)
-Reconcile your choices with “commonsense.” Will my actions make sense? In the long term, will the fruits of my decision be positive or negative? Force yourself to be honest.
-Reconcile your thoughts with your spouse. What does my wife/husband think? If we are not in agreement, I NEED TO STOP. God made you “one flesh.” You should be on the same page. Take time to talk the big decisions out, and do not move forward until you are on the same page.
-Reconcile your decision with personal, professional and family goals. Will my decision line up with my personal, family and professional goals? Will this decision require me to sacrifice one of these goals? In the long term, will it be worth it? -Beware of immediate gratification; it usually comes with a long term price. Again, force yourself to be honest. Will my decision ultimately bring me closer, -or further away from my predetermined goals? (BTW, you should have some goals you are working towards.)
-Reconcile your thoughts with a few close trusted friends. What do my close trusted friends think? Am I tempted to hide this decision from them? Why? If I disagree with the counsel of my friends, do I have a commonsense valid reason? Is it a difference of opinion or something deeper? It is obviously okay to disagree with trusted friends, but be honest with yourself and know the reasons why.
-Reconcile your decision with your “gut.” After my emotions settle, what do I feel in my gut? I find when I am thinking clearly -and not rushed, my “gut” is normally right.
-Reconcile your decision with prayer. How I am praying about this decision? Am I begging God to open a door, or am I genuinely asking God for His will to be done in my life. Am I truly neutral enough to seek God’s will? If God’s spirit prompted me with direction, am I being sensitive enough to hear Him? If I realize that God’s prompting is different than my desire, am I okay with that?
-“Make” the tough decision. Examine the “decision” from all angles, then make a decision. -You must make a decision. If you do not make the decision yourself, someone else will likely make it for you and it might not be the right one. Do not lose control of your life to “indecision.” Be wary if you sensed any red flags from any items above, especially if it is more than one.
-“Rest” in knowing that you made the best decision possible. You took your time and asked all the right and “hard” questions. “Rest” in knowing that you did your best to make the right choice. Rely on God grace and His spirit to lead you to good places. Trust Him. The God of the universe is perfectly capable of leading us through the maze of life, -if we seek Him and trust Him.
After making your decision, in the weeks after, take some time to reflect on the decision you made, the outcome you are experiencing and what you could have done differently in your decision making process. Life is a series of choices and every choice leads us somewhere. We need to continually develop the skill of learning to choose wisely and decisively; I have found this life skill to be priceless.