Having a conversation with the kids this morning explaining that just like the Lord, I don’t want them to be forced to love me because I‘m their mom. I explained that now they love me because I’m their mom and they don’t know any differently. However, one day, I want them (once they are grown and gone and in charge of their own lives) to choose to love me. I will no longer be a parent to them, always their mom, but rather (hopefully) a friend. I want them to grow up to see all the things I did and said and realize it was for their good and to love me for it. And then I want them to choose the right way I’ve taught them for themselves. I tried to explain that one day they will make decisions for themselves and I won’t be around to help them make those decisions. They must decide to use what they have learned from me to make the best decisions.
While having this conversation, it reminded me of something I’ve been questioning for quite awhile. I even talked about it this past weekend with a friend. Why doesn’t God just tell me what He wants me to do? I’d happily do it…well I’d at least do it because I have learned His way is best…so why doesn’t He just tell me instead of me trying to guess what the right thing is or what direction I should take? Then it dawned on me, God is doing the very thing I just explained to the kids.
God has walked me through many situations in the past that have taught me much about His ways. When my husband left me, God told me to stand. I had to decide to obey the command, but I was in no doubt of the command. Then there are times like when we had to decide to leave a job or not. We felt like it was the right thing, but had no clear command. So then we wondered if it was the right thing to do or not. It was. We had to trust. I believe those times of no clear direction are moments when God steps back to see what we are going to do based on what we’ve learned from Him, just like the parent He is.
All this contemplation made me want to compile a list of just what lessons I’ve learned from God that I would need to make the best decisions when He decides to step back and watch me make them.
Lessons I’ve learned from Abba in decision making:
1. Alignment to God’s Word. If it goes against the Word of God, it’s already a mistake.
2. Pray for guidance and His best (Jam 1:5). God may step back, but He never leaves us alone (Deut 31:6). Pray He closes doors that aren’t His best, and opens doors that He wants us to walk through (Rev 3:7-8). Also don’t pray for God’s permissive will. Sometimes, it’s permissible, but not God’s best for us (1 Cor 10:23).
3. Submit to authority (1 Pet 2:13). Children obey parents (Col 3:20). Wives submit to husbands (Col 3:18).
4. Spousal agreement. Usually when we need to make decisions, we need to wait to find agreement with our spouse (Eph 4:3; 1 Pet 3:7-8; Rom 15:5-6).
5. Utilize God-given counsel. Ask those I know that walk closely with the Lord (Prov 19:20).
6. Follow the peace. If something doesn’t feel right, it’s usually not (1 Cor 14:33).
7. Take my time. Rushed decisions tend to be poor decisions (Jam 5:7)
8. Avoid pressure. This is a combination of 6 & 7. When we make a decision purely out of pressure, something gets missed (Philippians 4:6).
9. Wait till I hear. Sometimes it just takes longer to hear God (Ps 85:8).
10. Listen better. Remove distractions so I can ACTUALLY hear the voice of God (1 Kings 19:12)
11. Check myself. If I’m not actively pursuing God and walking close to Him, decisions made won’t be good (2 Cor 13:5).
12. Let God move me. Honestly, not doing anything is doing something. Sometimes we must let God change circumstances. Trust His timing. (Ps 130:5)
13. Make the hard decisions. A lot of times we know what we are to do, we just don’t like it or want to do it. We must accept that God’s will is best, even if hard. (Rom 8:28)
14. Don’t get upset. I’m still working on this one. I have to remember that no purpose of God’s can be thwarted (Job 42:2). That tells me God will either prevent a bad decision or He’s gonna walk with me through one, because I got things to learn!
Hope this is helpful to any and all. If anyone has any other tools to share to this post, please do! We welcome anything that helps us make godly decisions and ways to follow Him! God bless!