Below is a recent letter I wrote to a friend seeking advice for wisdom in decision-making. I pray these thoughts are helpful.
Generation X tends to often struggle with doubt and indecision, and that has been my story. I have regrets of hopping churches and dabbling in dating over the past 10 years and had developed a reputation of being indecisive and uncommitted. It took most of my 20’s to conquer doubt and indecision with church ministry and dating relationships. I’m so glad the Lord restores, gives substantial healing, and uses us in spite of ourselves.
These 2 books have been very helpful to me:
1) God in the Dark: The Assurance of Faith Beyond a Shadow of Doubt by Os Guinness
2) Just Do Something: How to Make Decisions Without Visions, Liver Shivers, Writing in the Sky, Wet Fleeces, etc. by Kevin DeYoung
Os Guinness’ book helped me identify that struggles with doubt and decision-making were linked to sin issues of ungratefulness, lack of commitment, and fear/running from pain/difficulty. I am learning to be grateful where I am, commit long term, and embrace suffering through Christ.
This may sound crass . . . God doesn’t care where you live or where your paycheck comes from. Yes, he cares because he loves you, but ultimately, He cares more about HOW we live than WHERE we live. God’s will is clear in the Bible: rejoice, give thanks, pray, love God, love people, be holy, commit to and serve in the local church, make disciples, share the Gospel, marry a Christian, etc.
The place you live doesn’t matter. There is no perfect job, and there is no perfect spouse. Life is hard. It has it’s challenges. But things usually get sweeter through longevity and stability. Yes, there is a time to leave and a time to stay. But our generation is poor at commitment and sticking it out for the long haul. Our grandparents’ generation did much better at this. They got married, got a job, and made it work. There’s something good about that. We have so many options available to us, and we grow idealistic. We also tend to overanalyze and consider the repercussions of every decision, which becomes paralyzing and leads to worry.
Psalm 46:10 says to be still, relax, let go, cease striving and know that He is God. Relax. God has promised to meet your needs. Jesus promised to be with you even to the end of the age. Christians will go through trials and suffering, but the Lord will not give more than we can bear. He will provide all that you need so that your faith will not fail.
The godly man/woman of Proverbs knows truth and is a wise, confident decision maker. Be careful to not overspiritualize your decisions. We cannot trust emotion, feelings, etc. Walk in confidence in Christ. Know the Bible, pray, get counsel, and make wise decisions. As you move forward, trust God to meet you on the other side of that decision. He appoints the very times and places that we live.
Another comforting thought . . . nothing is wasted. God uses even our mistakes and sins for His glory. As Paul said, “Forget what’s behind and press on to what’s ahead. I press on toward the goal of the prize” which is knowing Christ.
So what is the Lord’s will? Again, God’s will is clear in the Bible: rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances, love God, love people, be holy, commit to and serve the local church, make disciples, share the Gospel, etc. Do these things, and everything else will fall into place.
Press on. Keep your eyes on Jesus. Run the race with endurance. You are in my prayers.