Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Major Life Decisions

by Steven

When it comes to making major life decisions (MLDs), how do you determine the best course of action? For the purposes of this writing I define a "major life decision" as a decision that will impact more than just yourself and that once done, will be costly, difficult, or impossible to completely undo. Some examples are: relocating to a new city, changing jobs, offering (or saying yes to) a marriage proposal, deciding to try to get pregnant or adopt, or taking a sizable financial risk.

Do you ask others for input?  Do you write a list of pros and cons?  Do you let circumstances decide for you.  Do you talk it out with your spouse and make a decision together?  Do you seek for the influence of a "higher power"?

I have observed that many people in the Christian community tend to spiritualize decisions, especially big ones, and make them more difficult than they need to be.  I include myself in that lot.  I sometimes wish that I viewed life as merely pragmatic.  Making decisions would be easier if they all boiled down to the practical and economic realities in play. 

For me, however, there's always been more to it than simply weighing the pros against the cons.  There's been a deeply-rooted belief in me that tells me that my choices aren't totally my own to make.  I have been governed by a conviction that says not every good opportunity is the best or even the right opportunity.  I have believed that God, Himself, has a say in my journey, and I need to voluntarily acknowledge His right to direct me.  Even still, I probably make it much harder than it needs to be. 

Did Jesus ever wonder what the will of His Father was?  Did He go through times of waiting, just waiting, with no clear direction from Heaven?

I remember my dad long ago pointing me to a verse in Colossians.  The verse tells us to let the peace of Christ rule in our hearts.  My dad said that to let the peace of Christ rule means to let God's peace act like an umpire in my life.  In other words, if you don't have internal peace about something, don't go that way. 

So that is how I have made my decisions; I've searched internally, long and hard at times, until I can determine if God's peace is in the matter or not.  And I have no regrets regarding who I married, or my geographic relocations from FL to TX to MO to TX to ???, or my decision to shave my chest.  Indeed, the peace of God has led me well; and it will continue to do so, I'm sure.

What about you?

5 comments:

  1. I don't shave my chest... often. Nice blog.

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  2. I think your dad gave you very good advice. I believe you should always talk to your wife about decisions, sometimes small, always major, but God and you should make the final decision. Your wife can talk with you about the pros and cons and pray with you. She can tell you her concerns about the matter and vice versa and you can pray about those. She is your helpmate in all matters whether spiritual or not. Wives need to share their husband's life. It sounds to me that you are on the right track if you are consulting God for his will. Do you have that peace you were talking about? That is the question. If not why not?(the peace) I have prayed for you that God will guide you and that you will have that peace. Jane Spencer

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  4. Steven & SarahJune 23, 2011 at 2:28 PM

    Thanks for your prayers Jane. We know God is faithful.

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  5. I have NEVER had the peace of God to shave my chest!

    Praying for His peace in your MLD! :)

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