February 16, 2005
Encouragement for Today

Life is All About Choices
Wendy Pope

Key Verse:

But if serving seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve...Joshua 24:15 (NIV)

Devotion:

Life is all about choices.  This is a lesson that I began to write on the hearts of my children from a very early age.  Sometimes the choice was what to have for dinner.  It could be choosing to go to Grandma's instead of a sleepover at a friend's house. Allowing our children to make simple choices fosters independence, encourages them to think for themselves and teaches them that having the power to make decisions carries the responsibility of accepting the outcome of those decisions.

Many times, after making a choice, my daughter would not be happy with the result and want to change her mind.  Lovingly, I would have to sit down with her to discuss the choice she made, why she decided to make the choice and explain why I would not allow her to have the other choice.  As hard as it was, she had to learn to live with the results of her decision.

Our Heavenly Father gives us the right to make our own choices as well.  He will not force His will or His ways on us.  It is not His desire to see His children unhappy, in danger or to spend eternity apart from Him.  But still, he allows us to choose. Our freedom to choose fosters independence and teaches us that choices carry responsibility.  God doesn't want us to live a life independent of Him, but one that is dependent on Him.  As I have taught this concept to my children, God has, in turn, taught me some guidelines in decision making to pass along to them.

When making decisions:

Pray

Sometimes you have to wait for the answer, but God's answer is the best and worth waiting on.

Search

Study God's word to determine what it says about the subject.  His word is a light unto our path.

Seek

Talk to godly people who actively live out what they believe and will pray for you.

Praise

The Bible tells us to praise God continually.  Praising makes the waiting easier.

Accept

Plan to accept the answer He gives, no matter what it is.

Applying these guidelines in your life will make decision making easier.  It will bring a freedom and peace that you have never known before.  Freedom and peace are blessings from above for the believer who earnestly seeks God.

My Prayer for Today:

Father God, I need your forgiveness for the times I have made decisions without consulting you or your word.  I recognize that you only want the best for me.  Help me to trust you in each decision I am faced with making.  I praise you for what you are going to do in my life.

Application Steps:

Write down two decisions that you are facing today.  Record today's date.

Write down the outcome that you think is best.

Pray and wait.

Ask one or two friends to pray for you.

Record God's answer when it comes.

Praise Him for His faithfulness.

Reflection Points:  

What is my current method of decision making?

Is God involved?  If not, why not?

Do I believe God can do what He says He can do?

Power Verses

"Trust in the LORD will all your heart, And do not lean on your own understanding.  In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He will make your paths straight." Proverbs 3:5-6(NAS)

"Do not be wise in your own eyes."  Proverbs 3:7(NAS)

"For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope."  Jeremiah 29:11(NAS)

Additional Resources

Becoming a Woman Who Listens to God  by Sharon Jaynes
http://www.gospelcom.net/p31/resources/womanlistens.html

Radically Obedient, Radically Blessed by Lysa TerKeurst
http://www.gospelcom.net/p31/resources/radical.html

Who Holds the Key to Your Heart by Lysa TerKeurst
http://www.gospelcom.net/p31/resources/key.html