July 10, 2014

The Decision Dilemma

Who among us hasn't had problems making decisions. Who hasn't wondered if it is our own voice we are hearing, or that of the Holy Spirit. Who hasn't lacked the patience to wait for God to show us His Will instead of feeling we are running out of time and need to make our own path. Why are there no questions marks behind any of those questions? Because those aren't questions, they are realities. They are things we all struggle with, and they are things we continue to pray for and work towards improving.

Let's take a small look at each of these. Problems making decision, that is a hefty one. This begins from the time we exercise free will as a child and are cognitive enough to start experimenting with our inner selves. Do the benefits outweigh the consequences? Who does my decision affect and what do I need to consider? Our decisions and choices can feel overwhelming at times, and we can feel lost and so unsure of any road to take. We often forget to hand our decisions, both big and small, over to The Lord to handle and carry for us. However, James 1:12 reminds us of this: "Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him". So what may that trial be that we need to push through? Trusting God's timing and ways, allowing faith to keep us patient, expressing gratitude no matter what the outcome. That's hard, but through Christ it is not impossible!

Wondering if we are hearing our own subconscious of why we want or if we are truly hearing the Holy Spirit speak to is regarding God's Will is one of the hardest things many people may struggle to figure out. Proverbs 8:10 advises us of something substantially important: "Choose my instruction instead of silver, knowledge rather than choice gold...". You may be thinking, "Well of course, I already know that an that is what I want. But that still doesn't help me to know if I'm choosing His Will or my own". Many times in our life we will never be sure if we chose the right path or made the right decision, because God does not show us everything. He ingrained us with free will for a purpose and does not wish to control us but He does know that the more we study the Word of God, the easier it will be to discern these things.

Oh boy...lacking patience. For some of is this is a BIG issue in our lives. And why shouldn't it be? That is part of our human tendency and part of the imperfection that we inherited through Adam and Eve disobeying God at the beginning of creation. We are surrounded with media and a society that tells us that we need things and we need them now, we need to make snap decisions or we are going to miss out on something big. Joel 3:14 states: "Multitudes, multitudes in the valley of decision! For the day of the LORD is near in the valley of decision". This helps us to remember that although we have many decisions weighing on our lives every single day, the approach we decide to take to them and the faithfulness in which we make our choices is very important and has eternal repercussions.

So it is wise for us to be patient, pray, and do our best to continue studying God so that we will learn better how to discern His Will from our own human decisions, which can be made out of emotion, anger, worry, or impulse. His ways are always best, His timing is always perfect, and His path ends in glorious riches when we are wise to store up treasures for heaven while we are still on this earth. "You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit – fruit that will last – and so that whatever you ask in my name the Father will give you." (John 15:16)

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