How many times have you made a decision, or taken an action, based on your feelings? No, seriously, think about it. We do it ALL the time. We’re grumpy with our spouse, we impulse-buy new things, we say “I wish I…”. Almost always, our words and deeds reflect our emotions – and what’s worse is they’re our shallow, knee-jerk reaction, childish emotions. They’re our base reaction, and often don’t reflect our deeper, more thoughtful, feelings. But God is ready to provide us with better guidance. He provides us with:
The Word (The Bible): Psalm 119:105 Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.
Read the Bible – a lot. Learn how God works and how He thinkgs. Learn who and what He approves of, and what angers Him. Make your decisions and your actions reflect a love of God.
Abundance of Counselors: Proverbs 11:14 Where there is no guidance, a people falls, but in an abundance of counselors there is safety.
When we do seek out guidance for a decision, how often do we respond to just one source, perhaps one popular news source or one topical blog or the advice of one friend? Especially when that source tells us what we want to hear? Instead, we need to find and establish good sources of Biblical guidance in our lives – friends, a pastor…and, ok a website or podcast as well. When we have a decision to make, we can trust that not all of these sources will just say what we want to hear
The Holy Spirit: John 14:26 But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.
This is perhaps the hardest to understand. It can be hard to discern between the spirit and “a vague feeling” or “a hunch” or “things just made sense”. But when we’ve spent time reading the Bible, praying, and listening to good Godly sources of knowledge, the nudging of the spirit becomes easier to recognize, because it is a familiar voice.
I’ve put these in this order for a reason: because the Bible is the standard by which to judge the other two. The more time we’ve spent in The Word, the more we’ll recognize God’s advice in the mouths of others and God’s voice in the still small voice in our hearts. And hopefully, we’ll allow that voice to speak more loudly than the feelings and emotions that keep us in constant reaction-mode to the world around us.