Making Big Decisions: 3 Questions to Ask Yourself


I mentioned in my previous post that a lot of things I am discussing in this series come from the book "The Best Yes" by Lysa Terkeurst. The three questions I'm discussing today are probably the most practical piece of her book. 

When facing a big decision, how many of us feel paralyzed by the thought of needing to follow the will of God? I know I sure do. The thought of trying to dig around and find the Lord's will for my life is exhausting and fear-filled because... what if I don't hit the mark? What if I don't make the right decision? 

What if I told you that the will of God for your life could include a couple different paths and Jesus loves you so much that He's letting you choose? Many people may not agree with this logic, but hear me out. 

I think as women we can analyze something into the ground (#overthinking). I can convince myself for or against just about anything if you give me enough time. Sound familiar? This "analysis paralysis" as Lysa Terkeurst puts it can really be debilitating in our spiritual walk. Jesus never intended us to be so incredibly intent on following His will that it just freezes us in our steps. So that's where these three questions come in. 

When you're facing a big decision, ask yourself: 

1. Are you consistently spending time in God's Word? 

2. Are you applying the truths you read in God's Word to your daily life? 

3. Are you seeking godly counsel from those that know the specifics of your situation? 

If the answers to the above questions are "yes", then you need to trust that you will make the right decision. If the three answers are "yes" and you have a gut feeling about something, dare I say that that gut feeling is actually the Holy Spirit guiding you to a certain decision? Sometimes the Holy Spirit is leading you to something that you'd rather not do and you choose to ignore Him for a time (been there, done that). Or maybe the Holy Spirit is leading you to the answer you want but you're afraid that you're choosing it out of your own desire and not God's. 

I think Lysa says it best when she writes: 

"If you desire to please God with the decision you make and afterward it proves to be a mistake it's an error not an end." 

How many of us know that God often teaches us more through our errors than through our successes? And it may be trite but it's 100% true: "And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to His purpose for them."

Sister, that's you. God's plan for your life is not dependent on your decision making capabilities. He uses absolutely everything to work together for His ultimate plan. He knows and expects us to make mistakes. That's not to say that we shouldn't try to make wise decisions, but we shouldn't feel so pressured to make the "right" choice every single time. God uses all of our decisions for His good, and He generously may give us more than one choice that would glorify Him.

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When I was praying about graduate school, I felt an incredible pressure to make the "right" decision. I struggled with trying to decide between pursing the dream I've had for 10 years and the desire to possibly be a stay at home mom when I have kids. I was paralyzed with fear thinking that I could potentially waste three years of my life and buckets of money on a degree that I may not use five years from now. But when I realized that perhaps God's will for me included roles as a nurse practitioner and a stay at home mom, I felt like a million pounds lifted off my shoulders. I no longer felt the pressure of making the absolute "right" decision for my future, because I knew that God would use whatever I decided (potentially both) for His glory. 

Friends, I hope you realize that God does not intend for us to be paralyzed in discerning His will. He gives us wisdom and discernment to follow His will without needing to send us a neon sign from heaven every single time we are faced with a choice. The Holy Spirit often comes in the form of gut feelings or a sense of peace. The Lord may set before us two paths that are inline with His will, and loves us enough to give us the freedom to choose. 

Realizing these things and using the questions above as a guide will free you from your fear. You may still have doubts (which I'll talk about in the next blog post), but don't let yourself be paralyzed. 

How do you go about making big decisions? Do you think God's will for us may include more than one thing? Do you think the questions above will help you in your decision making process? 

{If you missed it the first two posts in this series, check out Making Big Decisions 101 and Making Big Decisions: 4 Practical Steps to Wisdom}   



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