In a hectic world, it’s quite easy to forget asking our Heavenly Dad for directions. However, how many times are we left wanting after making hasty decisions? “Had I known!” leads us nowhere.
Too often we forget that the only way to avoid making decisions that leads nowhere is to rely solely on the advice of our Heavenly Dad. May we constantly remember this very fact: “Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete.” (John 16:24b, NIV2)
“But how can I do this?” You may wonder.
Simple enough: ask and expect an answer.
The goal of prayer is not to get what we want. Instead, it is about developing intimacies with God: “I want all of you to develop intimacies with God in prayer . . .” (1Cor 14:5a, MSG) Prayer is a means to experience God on a personal level. We share with our Father what weighs heavily on our heart, He does the same. God always honors such prayers, especially if we solely seek His advice. When we ask, He always answers, but we have to develop our ears to perceive His voice.
We can hear Him anywhere, if we focus solely on Him. This reminds me of the old “Western” days, where life was quite rustic. A typical mom in those days had at least five children, if not more. How can a godly woman even take the time to hear God in such circumstances? The one I read about found a simple solution. She would put her apron over her head, a sign to her children to not disturb mom at all cost! During that reprieve, this godly woman would communicate with Her Heavenly Father and wait to hear Him in a tangible way. She always succeeded to hear from Him. Sadly enough, I have forgotten her name! After all, it was a long time ago!
There are times, however, when we can’t seem to hear His voice. This may be because we are distracted or in a hurry. Or maybe there is an obstacle that hinders us from hearing our Father. What can we do then?
The solution is to rely on the guidance of His Holy Spirit and His Word the Bible. Why? Very simple:
“But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth.” (John 16:13a, NIV2)
“We’re going to study the Scriptures. People who try the other ways get nowhere-a dead end!” (Isa 8:20, MSG)
“By your words I can see where I’m going; they throw a beam of light on my dark path.” (Ps 119:105, MSG)
His Word, led by the Author Himself, God’s Holy Spirit, will lead us to the answer. It works every time, and I can vouch for this. All we need to do is take some time to spend with our Father and share with Him what lays on our hearts, asking Him to help us make a decision that is according to His will.
If we want a Godly decision that is true and good, however, we have to set aside what we want, for what we desire is not always what is best for us! If we do so, we will ask our Father to help us open His Scriptures to the right passage that will enlighten us about what decision to make. But just reading the Bible text isn’t enough. We need to be enlightened by His Spirit, who will make that Bible passage relevant to our circumstances. Every time I do this, I am always so amazed at how God comes through for me. Never have I made a wrong decision this way.
It doesn’t matter if it’s is something big like a career change or who to marry, or something as small as should we buy this book or visit someone we haven’t seen for a while. He will come through for us and enlighten us with the Bible text He is leading us to. We, however, have to be willing to follow His will above our own to experience Him fully.
When my wife had been diagnosed with cancer, I was shocked. I didn’t know what to do. Would I lose my precious wife to this hateful disease? Where there other options besides the surgery the doctors highly recommended? How can anyone make a wise decision in such circumstances?
I went to my shelter, my Heavenly Father, and poured my soul out to Him, asking for His advice and what the outcome would be. With the leading of His Spirit, He guided me to a verse that filled me with adrenaline: “And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.” (1 Peter 5:10)
I had my answer, and even though my wife still had cancer, God’s Spirit confirmed this promise by filling me with a peace beyond earth’s standards. I knew that she would be fine, that she would recuperate completely.
Two years after that fact, she has completely recuperated. She is truly healed! God is never wrong!
Another time I wanted to know if I should be buying a new computer, as my old one seemed to be dying. Again God came through with a Bible text, which I do not remember any longer.
No matter how small the issue is, if we rely on our Father, He will guide us to the right decision. No more “I should have done this or done that!” Our Father knows what is best for us, way better than we do!
It’s true, though, that at times I am led to a Bible text that doesn’t seem to lead anywhere. The first time this happened to me, I was quite confused. After a diligent search, however, into why I had not received my answer, it was revealed to me that I had not been ready to hear His answer. I needed time to gear my heart to follow my Father’s advice at all cost. Only when my heart was well aligned did God’s Word made sense to me.
“Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete.” (John 16:24b, NIV2) has become my reality and it will become yours as well, if you want to become intimate with our loving Father.
Facing a dilemma? No matter how big or small, our Father has the answer: “Call me and I’ll answer, be at your side in bad times; I’ll rescue you, then throw you a party.” (Psalm 91:15, MSG)
(To access the entire “How Can I Make the Right Decisions?” devotional series, please click here.)