Commit your actions to the Lord,and your plans will succeed. ~ Proverbs 16:9
If there is one thing I am not, it is indecisive. In fact, I might even say that I am the opposite of indecisive, I can be very impulsive. I figure most decision are ‘undoable’ to some extent so why belabor them? It’s why I’m a speedy shopper. I don’t need to look for the exact right outfit. This one, right here, will do. Too many options are just confusing. Pick A or B. Ok……A!
Jim, is the exact opposite. He is extremely deliberate with decisions. He’ll weigh every option, gather all the facts, keep his options open, try the free trials, get on the phone with customer support, delaying the decision and often he’ll find out that option Z is really the best one. He has the patience of Job.
Upon examination of both these ways of being, impulsiveness and indecisiveness, seems they are both based in fear. And if we’re trying to live a life of faith, then what are we to do? How can we make decision-making more tolerable? Easier? Infused with more God?
Impulsiveness stems from the fear that if I don’t get it now, maybe I’ll never get it. It is hasty and does not harness a good deal of self-control. It is easily swayed from one idea to the next and fears commitment. The underlying feeling is that of impatience to seek God and listen. Those who are impulsive make the move quickly and let God help them deal with the results of their actions.
Indecisiveness stems from the fear that if I decide now, I am afraid that I will have missed something better. It’s lack of surety and trust that God can work with any decision we make and leans on an attitude of self-sufficiency. Maybe God won’t be able to make things won’t work out if I don’t deliberate and weigh every option and decide with utter precision.
In Luke 10 we see Jesus calling and sending out seventy-two disciples in pairs to the towns he planned to visit, with simple guidelines.
Now go, and remember that I am sending you out as lambs among wolves. 4 Don’t take any money with you, nor a traveler’s bag, nor an extra pair of sandals. And don’t stop to greet anyone on the road.
5 “Whenever you enter someone’s home, first say, ‘May God’s peace be on this house.’ 6 If those who live there are peaceful, the blessing will stand; if they are not, the blessing will return to you. 7 Don’t move around from home to home. Stay in one place, eating and drinking what they provide. Don’t hesitate to accept hospitality, because those who work deserve their pay.
8 “If you enter a town and it welcomes you, eat whatever is set before you. 9 Heal the sick, and tell them, ‘The Kingdom of God is near you now.’ 10 But if a town refuses to welcome you, go out into its streets and say, 11 ‘We wipe even the dust of your town from our feet to show that we have abandoned you to your fate. And know this—the Kingdom of God is near!’ 12 I assure you, even wicked Sodom will be better off than such a town on judgment day.
He gave them an idea of where to go and how they were to behave. He did not say, go to this house first, go to this house second, heal this person with this prayer. Jesus is not a micro-manager. He trusts our decisions and works with them.
I can almost imagine the excitement and fear that must have been in the hearts of these seventy-two. They’ve never done this before!
“What if I try to heal someone and it doesn’t work? Which house should I ask to stay in? Are you sure we don’t need any money?”
Anxiety can easily creep in when we want to know every detail before we take action. This is the journey of faith. Action without all the details.
Jesus said, “NOW GO AND REMEMBER”.
So maybe this is the balance between impulsiveness and indecisiveness? Seek direction from God’s word, through prayer and guiding principles and then be willing to take action. Make a decision to make a decision.
And when the disciples returned to him it says they joyfully reported to him. They saw that He who promised was faithful also to do it. They lived out their faith, making the decision based on his instructions and He supported their efforts, regardless of which house they chose to stay in or which person they healed. God leaved the details up to us.
Next time I have a big decision to make I’m going to make an effort to slow down and ask for guidance. I’m going to be a little more deliberate with my choices. And if you’re one who is indecisive, maybe you can take the pressure off of yourself and know that regardless of what you decide God is still with you.
Rejoice! Everything your hand touches will prosper.
Day 34 Lenten Love Prayer:
This is the day that the Lord has made, I will rejoice and be glad in it. You know my coming and my going. You know when I sit and when I rise. You are with me day and night. You see me. You have a plan for me and that plan is to share Your love and kindness with others and to walk by faith and not by sight. Forgive me for the times I have been impulsive and did not seek Your guidance before making a decision and despite this, You entered in and redeemed my hastiness and made it all turn out for the good. Forgive me for the times when I have feared making a decision. Help me to trust that You will support the details of my life that I decide on based on seeking Your guidance. There is no where I can go that You won’t be there. Let me feel safe enough to take action where I have been stuck in inaction. Today I will make a decision to make a decision. I will rely on the promise you made that when I commit my actions to You my plans WILL succeed. Thank you for trusting me to decide and for giving me free will to work out the details, knowing that there is nothing I can do that will separate me from Your love. Let’s rock!
Day 34 Scripture:
We can make our plans,but the Lord determines our steps. ~ Proverbs 16:9