Last semester I had a group project that was assigned in seminary. I worked alongside other ministers and our topic that we were to speak on was decision making. We all divided up what we would do and the first thing that popped in my mind, was, what does the Bible have to say about decision making. I am not saying this to be super spiritual, but that should be our mindset with everything in life. When something comes at us in life and we are faced with something we are not familiar with, we should stop and ask, what does the bible say about this matter. I want to share with you what I learned about Biblical decision making from a few articles that I read. The first thing is:
1. What the Bible has to say about decision making
First, begin with prayer. First Thessalonians 5:16-18 says, “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” If we should pray in all situations, we should certainly pray in times of decision-making. As we pray, we ask for wisdom (James 1:5).
Second, define the issue. Wise decisions are informed decisions. It is important to understand what options are available. Once the factors are known, options can be further considered and evaluated.
Third, seek biblical wisdom. Some decisions become easy, if there is one clear choice consonant with God’s Word. Psalm 119:105 says, “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path.” When we follow the teachings of God’s Word, He guides our path and provides knowledge to make wise choices.
Fourth, seek godly counsel. Proverbs 15:22 says, “Without counsel plans fail, but with many advisers they succeed.” Sometimes, consulting with a friend or family member is enough. At other times, consulting with a pastor or other trusted voice can make the difference between a harmful decision and a helpful one.
Fifth, trust the Lord with your decision. In other words, if you’ve made your decision with prayer, sound wisdom, and biblical counsel, trust God for the outcome. Proverbs 3:5-6 says, “Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.”
Sixth, be willing to admit mistakes and adjust accordingly. In most cases, there is no wisdom in continuing down a wrong path after you have discovered it is wrong. Be willing to admit mistakes or failures and ask God for the grace to change.
Seventh, give praise to God for your success. When your decisions result in personal success, the temptation is to believe it is due to your own power, talent, or genius. However, it is God who blesses our efforts and gives strength. “A man can receive only what is given him from heaven” (John 3:27).
The second is an article by David Jeremiah entitled:
2. 5 Principles of Biblical Decision Making
1. YOUR BEST DECISIONS REFLECT YOUR VALUES
If I am a Christian, my every decision should be a Christian decision. This means what entertainment I enjoy, how I invest my money, and what I do in my free time. Every decision you make reflects what you actually believe. Your decisions and my decisions reflect our desire to glorify God. Do you choose to glorify God in everything we do and say?
2. YOUR BEST DECISIONS ARE BIRTHED IN AN ATMOSPHERE OF PRAYER
Living a life of prayer conforms us to God’s will and gives us desire to follow His leading in every decision that needs to be made. Prayer is our way of asking God for His wisdom and surrender our wants to His will. David Jeremiah tells about King Saul, “When Saul was faced with a crisis, he invariably made the wrong decision. Why? He was alert, intelligent, and charismatic, but he lacked internal character and intimacy with the Lord. He didn’t make His decisions in prayer or with a view toward God’s glory. His successor, King David, was just the opposite, earnestly seeking God and inquiring of the Lord before every decision”. Our days need begin with prayer, throughout the day we need to be in prayer, and before we go to sleep we need to be in prayer, constantly seeking His presence and wisdom in our lives.
3. YOUR BEST DECISIONS HEED WISDOM FROM OTHERS
The Bible reminds of this throughout the book of Proverbs
For lack of guidance a nation falls, but victory is won through man advisers (Prov. 11:14)
The way of a fool is right in his own eyes, but he who heeds counsel is wise (Prov. 12:15)
Pride leads to conflict; those who take advise are wise (Prov. 13:10)
Without counsel, plans go awry, but in the multitude of counselors they are established (Prov. 15:22)
Listen to counsel and receive instruction, that you may be wise in your latter days
By wise counsel you will wage your own war, and in a multitude of counselors there is safety (Prov. 24:6)
4. YOUR BEST DECISIONS TAKE TIME
Proverbs speaks on this as well, “The wisdom of the prudent is to understand his way” (Prov. 14:8) and “The simple believe anything, but the prudent give thought to their steps” (Prov. 14:15).
We are in such a hurry to get everything done. We rush through everything in life, but it would be foolish of us to make snap decisions. Take time to think through and allow God to lead you instead of going ahead of Him.
5. YOUR BEST DECISIONS ARE COMMITTED TO GOD
The previous four can be summed up in this one. We have a lot of decisions to make every day and we are sinful, selfish people, so we must commit our decisions to God. We must commit to a life of complete surrender, one of prayer, seeking wise counsel always and commit all of our decisions to God and He can bless them.
I pray that this blesses you as much as it did me! God bless you!