Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path. Psalms 119:105 NIV
Here’s a ludicrous story. A man named Fred inherited $10,000,000. The will provided that he had to accept his inheritance in Chile or Brazil. He chose Brazil. Unhappily, it turned out that in Chile he would have received land on which uranium, gold, and silver had just been discovered. Once in Brazil he had to choose between receiving his inheritance in coffee or nuts. He chose the nuts. Too bad! The bottom fell out of the nut market, and coffee went up to $1.30 a pound wholesale, unroasted. Poor Fred lost everything he had to his name.
In order to fly back to the States he went out and sold his gold watch for the money he needed. He had enough for a ticket to either New York or Boston. He chose Boston. When the plane for New York taxied up, he noticed it was a brand-new 747 jet with red carpets and chic people and wine-popping hostesses. Then the plane for Boston arrived. It was a 1928 Ford tri-motor with a sway back and it took a full day to get off the ground. It was filled with crying children and tethered goats. Over the Andes one of the engines fell off.
Fred made his way to the captain and said, “I’m a jinx on this plane. Let me out if you want to save your lives. Give me a parachute.” The pilot agreed, but added, “On this plane, anybody who bales out must wear two chutes.” So Fred jumped out of the plane, and as he fell dizzily through the air he tried to make up his mind as to which ripcord he should pull. Finally, he chose the one on the left. It was rusty and the wire pulled loose. So he pulled the other ripcord. This chute opened, but its shroud lines snapped.
In desperation the poor fellow cried out, “St. Francis save me!” A great hand from heaven reached down and seized the poor fellow by the wrist and held him dangling in mid-air. Then a gentle but inquisitive voice asked, “St. Francis Xavier or St. Francis of Assisi?”
What a farce. Yet we relate to Fred because we know what it’s like to make a wrong choice, to have crucial decisions turn sour, to see our dreams go awry or our plans go belly up.
That’s a fact of life. The choices we make either advance our cause or leave us stranded. Our decisions determine our destiny.
So how can we make wise decisions?
It starts by recognizing that God isn’t limited by circumstances. Which means we must make decisions by considering them in the light of whom we are in Him and not as a result of the circumstances we find ourselves in. In other words, remember to look to God, not your circumstances, when you make a decision.
Secondly, the counsel we receive influences our decisions. Which means we must watch out for negative advice and be on guard against ungodly pessimists or carnal counsel. Never listen to people with a narrow or minimal view of God. One unsurrendered believer can set you on the wrong path and just a few unspiritual people can obstruct the good things God wants to accomplish in your life.
Thirdly, you can’t make a wise decision if you aren’t prepared to count the cost. Life isn’t safer when we retreat. There’s a price to be paid in making a decision. Appreciate that to accomplish much you need to sacrifice much. For success runs uphill. There will be times when there’s no reaping without weeping. As Dwight D. Eisenhower said, “There are no victories at bargain prices.”
So look for your security inside the will of God. Turn to Him in humble dependence. Listen to the counsel of godly, optimistic people. And see the possibilities of God within your circumstances. For when you do these things God will help you overcome life’s challenges and bless you with His very best.