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Should I go to college, join the Peace Corps, buy a condo or have another slice of pie? The decisions we all have to make in our lives are almost endless. Is there a way you can make wise, prudent decisions that you will not regret later? The Proverbs tell us that "the simple inherit folly, but the prudent are crowned with knowledge" (Proverbs 14:18 Proverbs 14:18The simple inherit folly: but the prudent are crowned with knowledge.
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). If you have never given any thought about how to tackle making difficult decisions, then perhaps this article will give you a process worth considering. Decisions come in all sizes, impacting your life and those around you. Most people have an interest in making life better for themselves and their loved ones. Again, the inspiration of Solomon breaks through: "The wisdom of the prudent is to understand his way, but the folly of fools is deceit" (Proverbs 14:8 Proverbs 14:8The wisdom of the prudent is to understand his way: but the folly of fools is deceit.
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). We live in a world of deceit, lies, facades, gimmicks and false hopes. Knowing our purpose for life is the key to making wise decisions. We need to have God's plan for mankind clearly in mind. God wants us to be a part of His ruling family, serving, helping and contributing to His world government. God's way is one of peace and joy. "For you shall go out with joy, and be led out with peace; the mountains and the hills shall break forth into singing before you, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands" (Isaiah 55:12 Isaiah 55:12For you shall go out with joy, and be led forth with peace: the mountains and the hills shall break forth before you into singing, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands.
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). "The kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit" (Romans 14:17 Romans 14:17For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost.
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). By keeping God's laws (yes, the basic Ten Commandments for a start), you can identify the many forks in the road that become dead ends. Many paths in our modern world lead to destruction. "It is a joy for the just to do justice, but destruction will come to the workers of iniquity" (Proverbs 21:15 Proverbs 21:15It is joy to the just to do judgment: but destruction shall be to the workers of iniquity.
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). To help you make good decisions, consider the simple formula of "GOT." 1. Seek God's will in your life. 2. Discuss decisions with those most involved (others). 3. Sleep on it—give big decisions some perspective (time). And remember, don't sweat the small stuff. These points can be simplified into an easy-to-remember formula: G.O.T. = God–Others–Time. 1. Seek God's Will (God). Notice what Job stated while in the midst of a confusing trial in which he was pitted against Satan. "But as for me, I would seek God, and to God I would commit my cause" (Job 5:8 Job 5:8I would seek to God, and to God would I commit my cause:
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). As Christians, we can be instant in prayer and seek God's will daily. Asking God to reveal what we cannot know or see is also wise. There are many distractions in our modern world, and it is easy to make poor decisions that can affect lives. Asking for wisdom from above is a great place to start when making an important decision. 2. Discuss With Those Involved (Others). When decisions affect the lives of the people around you, it is important that you share your concerns and get input from those whose lives might also be impacted. Taking a job in a different state, for example, could mean uprooting your family from friends and a familiar lifestyle. Having moved many times in my life—often with children in various stages of life—I know it can be very difficult. Considering the feelings and fears of your family is important. While the need to move might dictate your decision ultimately, discussing the family's feelings will help you meet some of the challenges that you will face. We are all more willing to sacrifice when details of a decision are shared and input is requested. 3. Sleep on It—Give Big Decisions Perspective (Time). Decisions that have long-range implications need to be processed over time. Being impulsive and quick to make commitments can backfire when unplanned and unknown factors begin to appear. With rest and some time to reflect, you can save yourself plenty of agony. Fatigue makes cowards of us all, and trying to make a decision without thinking through the many factors involved can add unnecessary stress to your life and those around you. Of course there are countless options daily: what to wear, what to eat, places to go and how to relax. Most of these decisions won't make much difference in the long run. Don't sweat the small stuff. Some good advice for life's daily routine is to stay flexible, and then you won't get bent out of shape. But for those important, potentially life-changing decisions, remember G.O.T.—God–Others–Time. UN