I recently preached on God’s Guidance. Toward the end I provided some practical steps in how to go about making a biblically wise decision. The steps are outlined below and have been adapted from Kevin De Young’s book, Just Do Something: A Liberating Approach To Finding God’s Will.
- God has called us to himself. He has enabled us to know him through his Son Jesus and given us forgiveness and hope.
- The Spirit is at work to grow us into holiness and Christlikeness. We are a work in progress. It’s OK. We won’t be made perfect until Christ comes again. Our decision making is going to be flawed at times, let’s keep ourselves in perspective; it may save us from regret.
- We are to love God and love others. The first and most important command, this should be relevant to us as we seek guidance and make decisions.
- We are to search scripture and keep ourselves in line with the commands and guidance that God gives through his Word.
- We are to pray. Just sit down and pray about it to God. Whether it’s once, or it’s every day for the next 10 years. God seeks to hear from us but it may also change us.
- We are to talk to people with biblically wise people. In our churches and communities, and our wider Christian networks, who can help you think through issues and make decisions?
- We are to know ourselves. By knowing our gifts, abilities, skills, passions, attitudes and desires we can begin to see alignment between them and what God is perhaps calling us to. The question of are we a ‘good fit’ is a good one?
- We are to know other Christians. Discernment and guidance doesn’t take place in your own head. It is a communal exercise. Are their close friends who resonate with what you’re suggesting or doing? Does the church give its backing to your decisions and pursuits?
- We are to think through the opportunity. On one hand God’s ‘open door’ policy can be good. There is a door open and you can step through it, then you can look back and think of God opening the door for you. On the other hand, the ‘open door’ can be deceptive. The opportunity that comes along may take you away from other possibilities. However, if you’ve done the above then I would hope you’re right.
- We are to make a decision. The ball is in your court. Make a call, commit and follow through with it.
As a final summary to his book DeYoung concludes with these great words on God’s will, guidance, and making decisions:
So the end of the matter is this: Love for God. Obey the scriptures. Think of others before yourself. Be Holy. Love Jesus. And as you do these things, do whatever else you like, with whomever you like, wherever you like, and you’ll be walking in the will of God.