Welcome to the “Hope for the Heart Series!” For the next four weeks, I’ll feature posts intended to meet us where we’re often challenged the most. I pray the words written from my heart will speak encouragement to yours. The first post in the series is Choices for the Indecisive Heart.
We make choices every day. Paper or plastic. Eat-in or carry out. Call or text. But when it comes to making choices about our health, relationships, career or finances, the choices may be less clear and more challenging. I received an email recently, with this quote attached:
“Be decisive. Right or wrong, make a decision. The road of life is paved with flat squirrels that couldn’t make a decision.” ~ Unknown
Ouch! Who knew images of road kill could be so effective? Decision time is prime time for squirrel-like behavior. If I’m not careful, I can dart between the oncoming traffic of popular opinions, alarming facts and my private desires — until I decide to do nothing at all.
But not making a decision is still making a choice.
What decision are you facing? Are you concerned about making the wrong choice? Do you wonder how others will be affected?
The clout behind our conclusions can dramatically impact human events. In the Garden of Eden, Adam and Eve disobeyed God and caused the fall of humanity. (see Genesis 3) In the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus surrendered to God and redeemed humanity from the fall. (see Matthew 26:36-46)
Free will is a gift. How we use it expresses our heart towards the Giver. Our power to choose is our pathway to experience God or the point where we resist His plan. Whatever “garden” we’re in, we need to know how to do the right thing, at the right time, for the right reason.
“If you do not have wisdom, ask God for it. He is always ready to give it to you and will never say you are wrong for asking. You must have faith as you ask Him. You must not doubt”.- James 1:5-8 (NLV)
Short on wisdom? Ask God. If we’re short on faith, consider this: God knows every option available and every possible outcome. His wisdom gives us the option with the best outcome — the one that will bring Him glory.
Without His wisdom, tension grows in my heart instead of me growing in His grace. My mind is filled with confusion instead of the clarity of His word. Eventually the reality of my rebellion runs me over, leaving me flattened by my choices instead of fulfilled by His love.
“But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure and full of quiet gentleness. Then it is peace-loving and courteous. It allows discussion and is willing to yield to others; it is full of mercy and good deeds. It is wholehearted and straightforward and sincere.” -James 3:17 (TLB)
To help us discern between our desires and His will, this verse gives us a divine description of wisdom. It is quite a checklist for the wannabe wise and decisive heart. But God is faithful to strengthen a believing heart every step of the way.
Whenever we’re facing a decision, here’s some good news: We can decide to trust in God. I’m praying for you and me my friend. If the choice to follow Him comes with pain or with questions, may we have a greater sense of His peace and His power. For in Christ we have a decisive victory, the kind that brings hope for the heart and joy to the soul.
“Your own ears will hear him. Right behind you a voice will say, “This is the way you should go,” whether to the right or to the left.” – Isaiah 30:21 NLT