Careful on making that decision! Maybe you need to think that through a little more! Are you really sure that is right? Ever heard this from a friend or family member? They probably had your best interest at heart and just wanted you to make sure of your decision.
There was a time when purchasing a new appliance was a reasonably simple decision. Why? The choice was only between a few models. Today, we research for days to find what color, features, size, and how good the warranty is before making a purchase. There are so many choices. This mind-set attempts to analyze every facet of a decision from a human perspective. Yet, when it comes to our spiritual life, we may not spend the time necessary in the study of God’s Word and prayer to make a godly decision. Take time to say to God, “I don’t know what to do. I need Your insight to show me how to make this decision.”
I have made many decisions in my life that were not the best ones, how about you? If you had always made the best decisions, according to your thinking, wouldn’t you be wealthy? What captures many in decision making is goodness, not godliness. It is so easy to fall into the trap of making a good decision because you do not want to take the energy and time to make a godly decision.
Many lessons can be learned from a time in Israel’s history when they were making a major decision. Israel wanted to be recognized as a nation like the other nations. They wanted to be led by a king as the other nations and became tired of God being their king. They probably would not have openly said to God, “I don’t want you to be my leader!”
It is doubtful that a modern day believer would say that either. But would your actions demonstrate that attitude as you process decisions? Would you decide, “God you know there are many other families doing these kinds of things and my children are wanting to also, so I want to go that direction”? This kind of thinking disorients you from God being your King, your Lord, your Savior, your Deliverer, and your Decision Maker. Good thinking will certainly give you options to make a decision, but if God is not in the process, you will miss out on godly wisdom. The greatest downfall in the history of Israel happened when they settled for something that was not the best God had to offer.
In 1 Samuel 12:12 the Scripture says, “And when you saw that Nahash king of the Ammonites came against you, you said to me, “No, but a king shall reign over us,’ when the LORD your God was your king.” God was expressing to Israel, “I’m your king. I have taken care of you and have never led you in the wrong direction. I’ve done what you needed at the right time.” Yet, Israel wanted a king like the other nations.
Here is the picture. God’s people were about to make their greatest mistake ever. God had been their king. Every time God led them into battle they were victorious. God fed them and gave them something to drink. He guided them. But, there came a moment when Samuel was getting old and the people told him in 1 Samuel 8:5, “Look, you are old, and your sons do not walk in your ways. Now make us a king to judge us like all the nations.” In other words, they wanted to be like all the other nations because it seemed to be working for them.
Samuel told them that this king would reign over them, take their sons and daughters and make them chariot drivers, farmers, warriors, cooks, and perfumers. They would give up the best of their vineyards, fields, and olive groves. The king would take a tenth of all their productions. Everything they had would be subject to the king. But, the people did not listen, they wanted a king! They thought they were making a good decision. After all, the other nations ran their business this way, why couldn’t they become like them?
When God sent His only Son, He sent a Servant–Jesus, not a king. In the New Testament we read about the birth of Jesus and the shepherds watching over their flock by night. That is what a shepherd does. He watches over his flock. A king has his people watch over him while he sleeps. How far is it from a shepherd to a king? It’s a long way. David, who was known as the shepherd boy, became a king. He made decisions that he thought were good but turned out to be disastrous. If you don’t know the difference between what God’s Word teaches about following godly wisdom and what the world teaches, you will settle for less than the best.
We are to strive toward perfection–Christlikeness. How would you know the difference between good and godly? Walking in the Spirit allows you to see from God’s perspective. When you walk in the Spirit, God has access to your mind and heart. God can equip you with wisdom way beyond your years, way beyond your experiences, and way beyond your intellectual capabilities.
Where Is Your Decision Foundation?
When a decision has to be made, what will you turn to? Will you turn to what the bank would advise, or what you think your family would suggest? Though you need to consider those things, there is one other person who knows more about you than even you know–Jesus! He knows more about what is going on in your life than you do and has wisdom beyond anything you could reason. He knows what to do before you ever ask the question.
Since Jesus knows all of this, how critical is it for you to be up to date with Him at that moment of decision? It is absolutely critical. As you walk in His Spirit, you have access to His wisdom.
You cannot do kingdom work with the world’s principles and methods and receive spiritual results. Take time to process the truth of God’s Word in your decision making process.
*Adapted from The Christian Life: A Human Impossibility by Kerry L. Skinner