Should I? What God has to say about the decision making process – Part II

disciplineAs a follow up to last weeks’ post on decision making, here are notes from Blake Holmes’ second message from the “Should I” series.  You can see points one through five in last week’s post here.  I’ve made many mistakes, and without good counsel, I’m prone to making many more.  God wants far better for us.

6) What is the collective counsel of my community? – “Where there is no guidance the people fall, but in an abundance of counselors there is victory.  Proverbs 11:14″  (see also Proverbs 12:15, Proverbs 13:20, Proverbs 15:22, Proverbs 18:1-2)
a) Understand that looking for counsel is different than looking for confirmation.
b) It takes everyone getting in the room. Avoid having many separate conversations.
c) Recognize the difference between sharing you idea and selling your idea.
d) Know when to open the circle.

7) Have I honestly considered the warning signs? – “He is on the path of life who heeds instruction, but he who forsakes reproof goes astray.  Proverbs 10:17″ (see also Proverbs 16:25, Proverbs 27:6)
a) Be mindful of the signs through His Word, the counsel of others, and the Holy Spirit
B) Don’t think you are the exception to the rule.
c) God’s way is always the best way.

8) Have I considered the possible outcomes for my course of action? – “The wise woman builds her house, but the foolish tears it down with her own hands. Proverbs 14:1″ (see also Proverbs 14:15, Proverbs 27:12)
a) Do the “long math”
b) Assess the potential risks
c) Have a contingency plan

9) Could this decision jeopardize my integrity or hinder my witness for the Lord? – “Like a trampled spring and a polluted well is a righteous man who gives way before the wicked. Proverbs 25:26″ (see also Proverbs 10:9, Proverbs 20:7, Proverbs 22:1)
a) Work towards the center rather than flirt with the edge.
b) Would this pass the “newspaper” test? What if this decision was on the front page of the newspaper?  How would you feel about it?
c) Keep short accounts. When you blow it, it is okay to say you blew it.

10) Is there a better option that would allow me to make a better impact for God’s kingdom? – “The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life, and he who is wise wins souls Proverbs 11:30″
a) Don’t always take the easier option.
b) Ask “What story could God be writing?”
c) Don’t assume that because it is hard it is not God’s will.
d) Understand how God has uniquely gifted you.

Should I? What God has to say about the decision making process.

disciplineWe made lots of decisions every day.  Should I eat pizza for lunch?  Should I buy that new gadget?  Many of the decisions are small, but other decisions can have a huge impact on our lives.  Should I marry this person?  Should I buy this house?
What does the Bible say about making decisions?  A lot actually.  Today at Watermark, Blake Holmes shared how to apply Biblical wisdom to decision making in Part I of his series “Should I”.  Here are some quick take-aways. (NOTE:  You can listen to the entire message HERE)

1)  What biblical principals should inform my decision?

“For the Lord gives wisdom; from His mouth comes knowledge and understanding.  Proverbs 2:6″

a) What does the Bible say about that?
b) Who can help me better understand God’s word?
c) Make sure you’re not the only one who holds this opinion of what God’s word says.
2)  Do I have all the facts?
“He who gives as answer before he hears, it is folly and shame to him. Proverbs18:13″
a)  Ask a lot of questions.
b)  Don’t let your emotions get the best of you.
3)  Is the pressure of time forcing me to make a premature decision?
“Also it is not good for a person to be without knowledge, and he who makes haste with his feet errs. Proverbs 19:2″
a)  Don’t let the fear of missing out drive you.
b)  When in doubt, leave it out.
c)  Have you made sure you have all the information?
4) What are the possible motives  driving my decision? 
“All the ways of a man are clean in his own sight, but the Lord weighs the motives.  Proverbs 16:2″
a) Acknowledge that you have blind spots.
b) Honestly assess your motives both good and bad.
5) How should past experiences inform my decision?
“Like a dog that returns to it’s vomit is a fool who repeats his folly.  Proverbs 26:11″
a)  Look for patterns of behavior. Triggers.
b)  Understand how your family background informs your thinking.

It’s been a while…

It’s been a long while since I’ve been posting.  Life has a funny way of moving faster than we imagine.  Over the past several months we’ve seen friends lose marriages, lose a child, and we have watched friends struggle daily with the challenges of a 4 year old child with leukemia. 

In the midst of life, we get drawn into the vortex, and then we look up and remember that God is always in control.  He never stopped being in control, we just forgot.  In that light, life isn’t about blogs and technology, or friends, or even family for that matter.  It’s about God.  Always has been, and always will be.