When I began putting Radical Mentoring together, I wanted to make it about real life . . . about the things we do and deal with every day. Early on, the subject of decision-making went on the list. I realized there are two dimensions . . . decision-making and decisiveness. Coming to a good decision is a process we can learn and constantly improve on. But decisiveness . . . pulling the trigger . . . making the call, verbalizing it, acting on it, and dealing with the consequences, good or bad, that’s another thing in and of itself.
Of course, some people can make a decision in a New York heartbeat. They decide and go with it. Right, wrong, or rained out, it’s done. On the other hand, some folks just can’t make a decision. Their spouse, boss, colleagues, children or friends have to push and push to get even the smallest things decided. A lot of our willingness to make decisions comes back to self-confidence. The perfectionist struggles with the risk of being wrong, so postponing the decision is a way of postponing the potential shame of not getting it right. On the other hand, the highly confident person can process the facts, decide, and get going so fast that he terrifies the less decisive people around him.
For Jesus-followers, the answers to a lot of decisions are spelled out for us. If we’re serious about our faith, the Ten Commandments, the Sermon on the Mount, and Proverbs cover a huge range of decisions. Coupled with the Holy Spirit giving us peace about the best option and a check in our conscience about the not-so-good path, I’d say the majority of our decisions are ‘pre-made.’
Except for this.
We struggle to say yes or no and mean it. We know the right thing to do, but we just don’t want to do it. We’re afraid we’re going to miss out on something, or that it’s going to be hard, or that we might be embarrassed or people might think we’re weird or we might not end up getting what we want if it goes against us.
Saying yes or no comes down to trust. Trusting that you’ve done your homework, thought it through, sought counsel, checked Scripture and your heart, and landed on the best decision you can make. After that, you make the call and trust God for the outcome. He loves you and will be right there with you no matter how it turns out.
Scripture: All you need to say is simply ‘Yes’ or ‘No’; anything beyond this comes from the evil one. (Matthew 5:37)