On the list of things that I hate in life, spiders lead the list. But, following close behind is when a server at a restaurant asks if I’m ready to order. Friends, I’m absolutely AWFUL at choosing what to eat. It doesn’t matter if I’m at a restaurant or my friendly neighborhood Chick-Fil-A. So many choices and I hate that I could make the wrong choice! Most of the time, I end up ordering the same thing just so that I can avoid the stress of chosing.
I wish that I was a little more like my friend, Ben. When he goes out to eat, he just tells the server to choose for him. That’s right! Ben lets the server make the choice and he’ll eat whatever the server brings. (If you ever decide to do that, let me know what happens!)
Making decisions can be so stressful. Perhaps you can relate to some of my thoughts:
- What if I make the wrong decision?
- What if someone gets hurt because I make the wrong choice?
- What if I hate the choice I make?
- What if there is something that I don’t know before I make this choice?
Any of those sound familiar? If so, you aren’t alone! Keep reading because I’m sharing wise words that I heard years ago that took the fear out of my decision making.
A few years ago I had a choice: stay at my beloved job working on a great church staff team and the security of a regular paycheck OR take a leap of faith into full time speaking and writing and give up my job, influence and financial security. I spent almost six months praying, working the numbers, and talking with friends. But, there came a time when I had to face my fork in the road and make a decision because the pressure of both was closing in. Anyone out there can relate?
What’s your “fork in the road?”
- Keeping your job or take a risk with a new career;
- Remaining in your hometown or move away to a new place with more opportunities;
- Saying “yes” to more influence and responsibility, but saying “yes” means a greater risk of failure;
- Staying in a friendship with an unreliable friend or nurture a promising new friendship;
Making decisions can be so stressful! How many times have you looked up and said, “God just tell me what to do!”
Too many times we think that there is only one right choice. Most times, both choices are right. But we think that God will only be on our side if we can just figure out the one choice that He prefers. But what if God isn’t as concerned about your choice, but your commitment to Him? Could the greater lesson be that God wants you to trust that His power to take care of you isn’t based on the choice you make, but WHO you’re trusting in when you make that choice.
Years ago I ran across a quote that helped me when I face forks in the road and have to make tough choices.
“Sometimes you make the right decision. Sometimes you make the decision right.”
Embedded in the wisdom of this quote is that both choices are God-honoring, that I’ve prayed for God’s wisdom and that I’ve asked others for wise counsel. Once all of that is done, then this quote has freed me to actually make my choices.
I can hear some you now: But Barb, what if I make the wrong choice? Then you make it right.
As far as I’m concerned, a wrong choice is when my decision moves me down a path away from of my relationship with God. That’s the flagship indicator of a wrong choice.
Important: Just because something is hard doesn’t mean that you’ve made the wrong choice. Often the harder choice is right because hard choices often mean we must trust God more. When you step out in faith you’ll discover that Satan wants to discourage your attempt at faith by throwing obstacles in your way to get you to question God’s ability to take care of you.
By the way, remember this: Sweet friend, there are few things in life that cannot be undone. And for a path that we choose that can’t be undone, then we trust God to take care of us as we forge our way.
As far as my journey a few years ago, I made the hard, hard choice to leave my staff job. As soon as I made the decision, I felt such peace after weeks of agonizing over the choice. But, I also cried every day for six weeks after making the choice because I knew what my choice ultimately meant. Furthermore, two weeks after I left my job, a financial crisis hit my family. Com’on God, are you kidding me, was my first thought. But, instead of regretting my choice or beating myself up for leaving, I let the shock pass and I dug my feet into praying and trusted God. It took six months for things to calm down. So, that meant that I had six months to learn more about trusting God in new ways.
COMMENT: How do you feel about the quote? Are there choices that you’re worrying about today? How can we pray for you?