A little over three years ago Erika and I were praying about whether we should leave the church where we had served for 17 years and take a position at Friendship Church. We spent hours and hours praying and talking as we made the decision. At that same time, our son was starting to look through colleges to try and figure out where would be the best place for him to go. He was asking us questions about how to make a decision like that when there are so many possibilities. It wasn’t long after this that our daughter was asked out by a young man at her college and was trying to decide whether she should go out with him. Was he the right guy to go out with or should she be waiting for someone else? This was a season in the life of our family that was filled with life altering decisions.
Everyone’s life is filled with decisions. Even not making decisions is a decision in and of itself. We think of some of these decisions as small decisions, like which shoe to put on first before we head out the door. There are other decisions, like the decisions that my family was making three years ago, that we think of as large life decisions. How do we make these decisions? Does God care about all the decisions that we make or just the big ones? What decisions does God consider to be the big ones?
Many times, the decisions that we consider to be big can bring anxiety into our lives. We don’t want to screw these decisions up and we are worried that if we do, we will pay the price for the rest of our lives. That is a lot of pressure! Is all that pressure appropriate? How do we handle that pressure?
Some people just make whatever decision they think will make them the happiest. Other’s make decisions based on what will please the people around them. Followers of Jesus want to make decisions that conform to God’s will. But what is God’s will? Does God have an individual plan that each of us are expected to discern and follow as we go through life? What happens to us if we get away from the individual plan? How is God’s will that is expressed in the Bible related to His plan for your life?
God has given us all that we need in order to make the decisions that we face as we go through life. He gives us a clarity about which decisions are right and wrong. He also helps us to understand which decisions are wise and unwise. We all want God to speak about our decisions and it can be discouraging if we are expecting Him to speak in ways that He won’t and encouraging to hear His voice in the ways that He does speak.
I want to invite you to a Saturday Seminar where we will have brunch and consider these questions about decision making and more. We will be looking at what God’s Word has to say to us about making decisions that please God and talking about how the Holy Spirit, His Word and prayer work together in the process. I hope you can join us for “Decision Making by the Book” on Saturday, November 14 from 9:00am to 12:30pm in the Prior Lake Chapel. Register online here.