Decision Making

Many Christians read the Bible regularly because they believe it is God’s living, revealed Word for their lives. Over and over in the pages of Scripture, they read about generations who heard the voice of God. They read about YHWH speaking to his people again and again, with this phrase repeated time after time: “And God said . . .” Yet many of these same Christians live as though He doesn’t speak to His people today.

An entire generation of believers have come to make decisions completely on their own, without praying or consulting God’s Word. They never access understanding of the Scriptures. Many simply decide what they want to do, and then ask God to validate it. They move ahead with their plans and their only prayer is, “Lord, if this is not your will, then stop me”

Dear god, what are we doing? Over the last several days I have sent you messages talking about the “Holy Spirit.” So far we have discussed how “He is received by faith;” that we need to “walk with Him;” that He “knows what He is doing;” and that we need to “let go of our pride.”

The reason I sent those is because you and I are living in a time when everyone wants an immediate answer to all of their questions. But because those answers don’t come as quickly as they want it, they make major decisions in the blink-of-an-eye. Several years ago there was a best-selling book written to encourage this concept. It was quite appropriately entitled, “Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking.” The author’s theory was that we should, “Trust your instincts. Blink-of-the-eye decisions prove to be the best.” (A year later another book came out arguing against such a concept entitled, “Think: Why Crucial Decisions Can’t Be Made in the Blink-of-an-Eye.” The book said, “If bestselling books are advising us to not think, it comes as no surprise that sharp, incisive reasoning has become a lost art . . .”) Wow! How confusing . . .

But there is something happening in our culture that is forcing us to “Choose first, think about it later.” Think about all the hurried-up “blink-language” we hear every day: “This is an offer of the century. You can make a bundle overnight. But you have only a short window of opportunity. Get on it now!” “This price is only good for today . . .” “But there’s more! If you call now we’ll give you . . .”

The driving spirit behind it all is, “Blink, blink, blink!” Car salesmen are notorious on the pressure sale: “Well what would keep you from owning this car today? If you signed today, I could give it to for ______, but I can’t guarantee the car will be here tomorrow . . .” Here is  an alternative that I guarantee will work for you. Any time you hear that pressure line, tell them simply, “Okay . . . no.” If they insist on an immediate answer, give it to them: “No!”. If you don’t have time to consider it, time to pray about it, time to balance the pros-and-cons, it would be best for you to walk away from it.

You see, it wasn’t even a few years ago that the watchword among Christians was, “Did you pray about this matter?” “Have you sought the Lord concerning it?” “Are your brothers and sisters surrounding you in prayer?” “Have you received godly counsel?

That’s the way it used to be, but I ask you, is this what you have been doing? In the past year, how many important decisions have you made where you honestly took the issue to God and sincerely prayed? Or even shared your concern with brother and sisters to pray with you? Have you gone to your spiritual leader and ask for their counsel? How many of those decisions did you make “in the blink-of-an-eye”?

The reason God wants full control of our lives is to save us from disasters—which is exactly where most of our “blink-decisions” end up.  Don’t get me wrong. There are times when an instant-decision is needed. Like when someone is in danger and you must react instantly. And, there are times when you are walking with the Lord, tuned to His Spirit and you are faced with a decision and you “know” (with no explanation as how you “know,” you know) the answer instantly. This does (and should) happen. I could give you several instances where this has occurred in my own life. But these are the exceptions and not the rule . . . when Solomon was given the overwhelming task of ruling God’s people, his only request was, “Give me wisdom and knowledge . . .” That’s what we need to do every day.

Father I fully recognize you as the source of my understanding and wisdom. I run to you for counsel and direction. I trust your guidance certainly above my own, but I recognize that sometimes I also need to seek to support and guidance of my brothers and sisters as you inspire them. Please Lord, continue to guide and direct my steps. Whether it is through your Word, through your “mouthpieces,” or directly through your Spirit. I will always bring my decisions–big or small–to you first. You are my Lord and I follow only your guidance. I hear only your voice and listen to only your wisdom.

Doulos Studies

(I send out messages like this each morning in emails, and if you are interested in receiving them, send me your email address and I will add you to the list: Mail List)

I do thank you for your gifts. It is your faithful and continued support that makes these messages possible.

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