How to Make Big Life Decisions (3 Steps)
Life is confusing. There is no roadmap, no mile markers, and no directional signage. Sometimes big decisions come into our paths and we must make a call: who to marry, what school to attend, should we quit a job, etc. These decisions simply show up on our doorstep and demand that we make a decision. Not making a decision isn’t avoiding the matter, as not making a decision is also a decision.
Decisions must be made, and the reason our knees quiver at deciding is because we understand big decisions change the course of our life. God is sovereign and his plan will stand, but we want to make the right choices. We want to flourish.
So how do we choose? For those of us that follow Jesus, how do we make our life decisions in such a way that we seek his counsel and do not rely on the highly limited amount of wisdom we possess at the time?
The first step in making any big decision is to put it before the Lord in prayer. God knows what’s on your heart, so don’t approach prayer like a dissertation. Prayer is an emotional and spiritual exchange with your Father. Come as a child, using your language, and talk to God. Explain your struggles. Ask for clarity. Ask for his will to be done in your life. And be willing to wait.
What I don’t mean here is find a verse in the Bible to proof text (justify) a decision you want to make. What I mean is to dig into God’s Word on its own terms. The Bible isn’t one of those plastic 8 balls that you turn over and it spits out a course of action. It is a spiritual document which aims to illuminate Christ and stir you to worship (because therein lies your joy). Let the Bible speak to you.
Note this is step 3, not step 1. After you have prayed and sought Scripture, then proceed to asking wise people what they think. If you start here, you will start with an unprepared heart and mind. When you seek counsel, seek counsel from people you respect and almost as importantly, seek counsel from people who will tell you the honest truth. That friend who always affirms you isn’t helpful here. You need someone who keeps it real.
If you follow the above 3 steps when making big life decisions, you will make better ones. Will you make perfect decisions? No. Will you still make huge mistakes based on your ignorance and your sinful heart? Yup. But if you approach big decisions in this manner, I can assure you when it’s time to make a big call in your life, you will have done your proper diligence. And what matters most is that you have sought the counsel of God, the Author of your story.