6 Principles to Empower Your Decision Making
Our daily decisions matter. We have all made decisions we regret – some immediately, some down the road and some continually! How should we make decisions in our daily lives? How can we be sure we are making the right decision? There is a solid process for making major decisions that will ensure you follow the right path. When I follow these six principles, I am happy with the outcome and, more importantly, am at peace with the direction I am going.
Does every decision really matter that much? I mean, what you have for lunch? Whether you buy a blue shirt or a red shirt? Part of the prayer Jesus taught us goes like this: “Your will be done in earth as it is in heaven.” I am convinced that nothing done in heaven is contrary to God’s will. Therefore, everything we do matters. Every decision we make must be in harmony with God’s will. It may be that it doesn’t matter to him whether you pick the blue shirt or the red shirt but we should allow him to speak!
We need to know God’s will in all things and then do God’s will in all things! I have said on many occasions that in order to know the will of God we must do the will of God. What I mean is that God reveals so much of his will in his word. When his will is revealed, we must be obedient. A track record of obedience is the foundation for doing God’s will with every decision.
Here are six principles to employ in making decisions. For major decisions, you must be careful to follow each one. For minor decisions, the process can be speedier.
Slow down. Hasty decisions are often bad decisions. I cannot tell you how many times I made a very bad decision because I got swept up emotionally and made a quick commitment. Sometimes these decisions can be undone, more often they just lead to regret. So, slow down, take some time. Back away and get some perspective.
Pray. Ask God what you should do. This will help the slowing down process. Wait for his answer. The act of prayer helps you gain some perspective. As you wait for an answer you will find your perceptions of the options will change.
Read the Bible. As I mentioned above, you must have a foundation in the word. Daily time getting deep into the word of God enables you to understand the mind of God. You will discover principles you can employ to help you with decisions. You will understand the will of God as expressed in his commandments. Having a foundation in the word, will automatically make some of those decisions for you!
Three Major Considerations
Consider your witness. How will the decision effect your witness? Is one option going to bring shame into your life? Is one option more likely lead to spiritual compromise?
Consider the glory of God. Will God be glorified by one decision or another? When God is glorified, we have the privilege of witnessing his glory! Will doing the thing you consider help people to see how awesome God is? Will the choice you make diminish God’s glory in your eyes or the eyes of others?
Consider the effects on others. How will your decision effect people in your life? How will it effect your family, your friends, your church, your neighborhood, co-workers or classmates?
Clearly, you won’t spend days considering whether to buy the red shirt or the blue shirt. But you should spend days deciding on whether to buy the new car, the new house, go for the new job, which college to attend or whether to move.
Life is full of decisions. Sometimes you will make the wrong decision no matter how careful you are. Our spiritual hearing is not perfect, although it should be improving all the time! As always, if you would like me to pray for your regarding a specific decision, feel free to email me your concerns.
If this has been helpful, please pass this along to someone else so they can become a stronger follower of Jesus, too!