There are times in our Christian life when other believers are struggling with a decision, or struggling to discern God’s will for their life, and they seek you out for advice. What do you say? Below are some pointers in coming along side someone to assist in their decision making.
1. Do not tell the person what he or she should do, even if it seems obvious to you. The person is seeking God’s will, not yours.
2. Encourage the person to wait on God’s answer. He will reveal His will to those who earnestly seek Him. And remember that God is much more patient than we are.
3. Do not allow superstitions to enter into the decision-making process (such as blindly pointing to a passage in the Bible or following some dream or coincidence). God uses His Word, not luck or superstition.
4. God is most interested in a relationship in which we lean on Him daily for our strength and guidance. He will not show a person his or her entire life’s journey. He wants us to rely on Him throughout our lives.
5. Be careful not to put too much credence in a person’s feelings. Emotions can be misleading and may cause a person to sin. Often people will quote Psalm 37: 4 and say that God wants to give them the desires of their heart. This is true only after the first half of that verse is fulfilled, which is that they should be delighting themselves in the Lord.
Faith and action go hand in hand. It is not necessary to make a final decision hurriedly, yet we must also not become complacent and do nothing. We must engage in activities, like searching the Scriptures and prayerfully seeking counsel from mature believers.
When we have God’s peace concerning a previous action, we can receive it as God’s confirmation. This peace is a knowing, a revelation, a confirmation that God is with us and we are walking in His will. If the peace isn’t present, then we had better go back to the Lord and continue to seek His will.
1. God Will Show His Will – (Remind the person of James 1: 5– 6. Assure the person that God wants to reveal His will to him or her even more than the person wants to know it.) God will speak through His Word, His people, and through prayer. Search the Scriptures, be patient, and pray through the decision at hand.
2. Be Patient – At times it may be necessary to make the decision not to make a decision. In other words allow yourself the luxury of purposely not deciding until a later time. Often God’s will becomes evident after a period of time, and we have to backtrack because we rushed into a decision. During the waiting period, keep seeking God’s will.
3. Be Proactive – Think about the major decisions that you have made in the past. List the results of those decisions. Mark the decisions that you believe God directed. The Christian life is not merely a matter of getting from here to there, from point A to point B. Instead, God’s will for us in this life is more about the journey itself.
4. List Options – List as many options as you can think of regarding the current issue.
5. What’s Obvious? – Are any of these options automatically outside the will of God? For example, are any illegal or immoral?
6. Keep Praying – Commit yourself to praying over your options for a specified length of time.
7. Get Wise Counsel – Ask advice from a trusted Christian friend or family member regarding this decision.
8. Make the Decision – After the specified amount of time has passed, make a decision and accept that decision as God’s will.