The biggest issues in my life don’t occur when I have to do something courageous or risky. The biggest issues in my life don’t transpire when I have to do something tedious and arduous. The biggest issues in my life arise when I have no idea what to do. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a scary thing to perform in front of hundreds or thousands of critical people. And it’s intimidating when you have to confront a friend or family member about something they’ve done wrong. But there’s nothing worse than simply not knowing what to do.
I am bombarded with this dilemma often. There is no obvious answer and no matter what I choose I experience loss in one way or another. I usually start my decision making process by drawing a T-chart, listing PROs on one side and CONs on the other. Sometimes this works perfectly and other times it doesn’t because even when one list is longer than the other some of the factors on the shorter list out-weigh the factors on the longer list. In those cases, I find myself right back where I started; conflicted and anxious.
The only solace I have received has come through prayer. There I’m able to verbalize my T-chart and simply put it in God’s hands. After I pray I usually find myself still conflicted but less anxious. I then become aware of what God is saying through seven keys: (1) the Word of God, (2) the Holy Spirit, (3) prophetic words of wisdom, (4) Godly counsel, (5) confirmation, (6) peace and (7) circumstances. (Click here for more on “Seven Keys to Hearing God’s Voice” by Craig von Buseck.) These keys nip the spirit of conflict in the bud and although it takes much patience the process is worth it. The process teaches you how to cry out before God. The process humbles you and reminds you of your dependence on God. The process exercises your faith and ignites expectation. The process is the power! God can only work mightily through us when we relinquish control. The Children of Israel realized this after being conquered by the Babylonians (see Ezra and Nehemiah). God was finally able to show them His power once they admitted they needed Him to lead and guide their every step.
If I could choose, I’d avoid all uncertainties and conflicts. I’d choose to only do things I know will work out with as few hiccups as possible. But in return my prayer life would be nonexistent, I’d be totally self-reliant, and I’d talk to God when I got around to it. God allows hardship and confusion to work for our good by simply drawing us to Him. While at His feet He reminds us that He is in control and no matter what may come He has us covered. He embraces us while He works behind the scenes and in time we are given the victory. Our only responsibility is to lean solely on Him and trust Him in every situation, especially when we simply have no clue.
p.s. (regarding the chart) Although it was clear I should’ve let the guy go (God was speaking so clearly) fear told me to hold on. Continuing that relationship led to more heartache than I ever could’ve imagined. I learned a valuable lesson though. When you don’t know what to do, God is whispering ever so clearly. All you have to do is listen and obey.