Decisions take place throughout our entire lives. How we make our decisions can have a profound effect on our lives. If you are a follower of Jesus Christ, it requires making a decision to live a life that honors Christ. Are there circumstances that get in the way of making decisions according to living as Christ would have you to live? Are you living as God’s Word would have you to live, or are you “going with the flow” or living life “off the top of your head”? Does fear, confusion or a lack of commitment affect your decision-making?
Real problems sometimes require difficult decisions. Christians, however, need to remember not to remove God from the process. Decisions should always be in consultation with God in prayer. It is also important to allow for Scriptural information and insight in the process. God’s Word helps us to remain in fellowship with Him and to provide guidance in our lives. We are also to make an honest assessment of who you are as you are making decisions. You should not expect to be making good and effective decisions if you are not living according to God’s Word and not in a right relationship with Him. Decision-making should also occur without the element of human emotion or human attraction. Emotions will always cloud the vision of the decision-maker and the process.
Life is full of problems and solutions (Job 5:7, 14:1). It is our process of coming up with solutions through the authority of God’s Word that is of greatest importance. The wrong decisions are a sign of carnality (Proverbs 14:12) and lead to disorder (1 Corinthians 14:40). Decisions should always lead to peace and order, and our God is not a god of confusion.
People who place themselves under the authority of God will make good decisions. Why?
1. To have authority from God means that you have the legal right to act. The decisions made in this authority will not just affect you but also have an impact upon others…they will have a ripple effect on the lives of others and even for the Kingdom of God.
2. To act is to make a decision and carry out an action.
3. Jesus has complete authority (Matthew 28:18); therefore, you can act on this authority with confidence.
It is fair to conclude that any decision made without Jesus is a decision made incorrectly and without His authority.
In 2 Chronicles, Solomon was in fellowship with God, and in that relationship God elevated Solomon to be a great king and leader (2 Chronicles 1:1). As long as Solomon followed the Lord, he was highly successful. When we see Solomon’s life change and begin to make poor decisions, it was because he moved away from God’s teaching and instruction (1 Kings 11:1-13). Solomon loved women outside of Israel–women of foreign lands who were worshiping other gods and idols. God had forbidden this in the beginning because He knew that the love and desire for them would cause Solomon to follow after them and their practices.
There are four steps towards poor decision-making:
1. Not taking God’s Word seriously (2 Corinthians 6:14)
2. The heart is captive to something other than God (1 Kings 11:4)
3. The devotion for God is lost (1 Kings 11:4)
4. The desire to commit evil (1 Kings 11:6).
Solomon’s poor decisions aroused God’s anger towards him, and led to God taking away his kingdom from him (1 Kings 11:9, 11), and the Lord raised up an adversary against him (1 Kings 11:28, 40).
Solomon’s decision-making was driven by his emotions and acted accordingly. His heart was turned away from God, which created in him a heart of double-mindedness (James 1:5-8). The decisions that were made were not good for him; in fact, they only brought about destruction to his doorstep. Solomon, who was once praised for his great wisdom, became foolish in his evil actions and poor decision-making, all because he decided not to follow and trust God.
When you make the commitment to desire God’s will over your own will and desires, you will be able to make the best decisions for your life and the lives of others around you (Psalm 1:6).
“As He (Jesus Christ) was saying these things, many believed in Him. So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed in Him, ‘If you continue in My word, you really are My disciples. You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free‘” (John 8:30-32).
Pray for the Lord’s guidance in all decisions that you make, and for His will to be prominent throughout the entire process.