Three steps to making decisions and embracing change

“So Abram went, as the Lord had told him.” Genesis 12:4a

Creature of habit. I would describe myself that way, even more so as the years go by. Change doesn’t come easily to me. Then I look at Abraham in The Bible, also called Abram. At the age of 75, Abraham embraced the change that God had told him was needed. He believed the promises God made to Him, packed up everything, and went on the move with his whole household, as we see in Genesis 12. He had faith that God would do what He said. 

Making change happen often requires making decisions. If you are indecisive, you may find it difficult to make even beneficial changes in your own life. Indecision because of fear, regrets, or lack of experience at making decisions can hold you back from where you wonder God might be leading you. Instead of focusing on those feelings, shift your focus to:

  1. Prayer and God’s Word. Start here! This will help you identify if the change you have to make is a moral one with clear direction from the Bible. (To be clear, if it’s a decision to sin or not, don’t sin!) But it will also prepare your heart to see beyond your initial reaction and to hear from God on what to do. James 1:5 NASB says, “But if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all generously and without reproach, and it will be given to him.” Spend time giving your request over to God (Philippians 4:6-7).

  2. Advice. You know that some people will not necessarily want you to change something in your life. It is valid to hear their point of view, especially if that person is your spouse. But also search out people who have had experience and even success in the area where you are making a decision, and get their point of view, too. “Plans fail for lack of counsel, but with many advisers they succeed.” Proverbs 15:22 NIV. The caution I would throw in here if you are someone who likes to please others above all else, is to limit your advisors to just a trusted few instead of everyone you know. 

  3. Research. It is valid to “count the cost.” (Luke 14:28) This may involve a pro/con list, and some pros and cons are dealbreakers. A portion of your research may be completed when you are seeking out advice. Find out what you are getting into with this change. It may not turn out to be what you thought it was. 

Even after all of that, you can get stuck on making sure it is the perfect decision. You’ve taken all of the steps above, and thought out each possible scenario for making the change or not. You want so badly to please God with your decision, and you picture making the wrong one and ruining your life and the plan God has for you. But when you aren’t choosing between something clearly morally right or wrong, there is a lot of freedom in your choice and making changes. Putting all your faith in a decision about a job, a move, or college, to be the one action that changes your life forever, puts very little faith in God and His plan for your life. Even if you make the wrong decision, He can redeem it. Abraham made many mistakes along the way that came with their consequences, but God still kept His promise to Him and made him in “a great nation” (Genesis 12:2).  

In the end, it’s about honoring God with your whole life, whether it means making a big change or not. Proverbs 16:3 NIV tells us, “Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and he will establish your plans.” Trust Him with the decisions and changes in your life.

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