Every day we face hundreds of choices and decisions. Fortunately most of them are not life-altering.
Should I go with the honey hot wings, or the Cajun? Should I get the ultra-whitening toothpaste or the kind that restores brain cells? Should I watch Doomsday Preppers or Extreme Paranormal Makeover?
But as the new year begins, many of us face difficult and life-changing decisions. I’m so grateful for God’s incredible promise in Psalms 32:8:
I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with my eye upon you.
This is the one of Scripture’s most encouraging promises. I regularly pray “Thank you Father, that you have promised to instruct me and teach me in the way I should go and counsel me with your eye upon me. Please guide me in this decision I am facing. Please show me what to do. Please give me wisdom. Thank, you, Father that you have promised you will.”
First of all, it is God Himself who instructs us – “I will instruct you… I will counsel you… My eye upon you.” God doesn’t delegate his counsel to an angel or anyone else. The very fountain of all wisdom counsels us. The one who devised the laws of nature, who knows how the whole universe works together, who knows all things, including the future; the one who knows us intimately, who knows what is best for us and loves us so deeply he shed his only Son’s blood to purchase us. This is the one who instructs us and counsels us.
God teaches and guides us for his own glory. He wants us to lead lives of maximum effectiveness and fruitfulness. He desires to display his goodness, kindness, mercy, and transforming power through us. God wants to counsel us more than we want his counsel.
He shows us the way to go because he is a loving Father. If any of my children faced difficulties and ask for my advice I wouldn’t say figure it out on your own. I want my children to do well. I want my children to have every good thing. I want my children to know and enjoy God. If I desire these things from my children, how much more does our heavenly Father desire them for us?
He speaks to us his by his Word and his Spirit. God’s word is a treasure chest of wisdom and guidance. It contains all we need to know about God and how to obey him. It is filled with his will from cover to cover. In addition, God fills us with his own Spirit, the Counselor, who guides us into all truth and shows us what to do in every situation.
God also speaks through the preaching of his Word and books written by Christian teachers. He also guides us through godly Christian counselors–our parents, pastors, wise friends, and fellow believers.
What are you facing today? Before you make that decision, go to your loving Father and thank him for his wonderful promise to teach you guide you and personally counsel you. Seek him in big decisions and small. Then trust him and don’t fret. He will certainly fulfill his promise to guide you in his perfect timing. If you have to make a decision, and have sought him, and still don’t know what to do, just make the best decision you can. He will guide you.
Obviously you don’t have to ask God what kind of wings to get. But I would recommend the Cajun.
Mark Altrogge has been senior pastor of Sovereign Grace Church of Indiana, Pennsylvania, since 1982. He has written hundreds of songs for worship, including “I Stand in Awe” and “I’m Forever Grateful.” Mark and his wife, Kristi, have four sons and one daughter. Find out more on his blog, The Blazing Center.