As we learn to live by grace, we may sometimes struggle with decisions. Warren recently asked an excellent question regarding this. “When I have a decision to make and cannot hear from God, should I do what I think is best, believing that God will bring good out of even a bad decision, or do I do nothing?” As you can imagine, wrestling with this may make a person feel anxious and doubtful about making everyday decisions. This is more common than we may think. Yet, the good news is that Scripture is clear about how to live our daily lives. Let’s take a look together.
We have the Scriptures, especially the New Covenant to lean on when making decisions. In this case, we do not need to hear God apart from Scripture to determine what to do. For example, the Holy Spirit writes in 2 Corinthians 9:7, Let giving flow from your heart, not from a sense of religious duty. Let it spring up freely from the joy of giving—all because God loves hilarious generosity!
This is clear that God wants us to give financially. So, when you are asked to give to an organization, a person, or a need, how do you go about deciding? First, is your new heart in Christ moved so that you have the desire to give? If so, how do you decide how much? Many of our GLI staff pray and ask our Father to speak to them about this, and an amount comes to mind. Others simply know without even praying the amount they want to give. In either case, you will not feel an obligation to do what you really do not want to do. Instead, you will know it’s from God because you will experience the joy of the Lord in whatever you decide. (I would be remiss at this point if I didn’t express my great appreciation for those who financially support GLI as a whole and our staff who raise financial support, including myself. So, thank you!)
In addition, you can be assured of a few realities. You and I are united with our God, who is incredibly generous to the point where He is said to have lavished His grace on us. In Him, we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our wrongdoings, according to the riches of His grace which He lavished on us (Ephesians 1:7-8a). So, as we rely on Christ in us to live through us, we will want to live generously.
Another important truth to remember is that because we have a new heart in Christ, we have an identity in the depth of our being that is generous. In other words, you are a generous person in Christ, not because you give but because of who you are in Him. It’s the essence of your truest identity. You are like your Jesus according to 1 John 4:17c, As He is, we also are in this world.
The point of all of this is not about giving financially. It is about making decisions because of our confidence in Christ. When we rely on Him to live through us, and because we have a new heart in Christ, we can make decisions that seem best to us as long as they don’t contradict Scripture.
So, don’t live in the fear that if you do not hear God’s voice outside of Scripture, you might make the wrong decision. You can certainly seek wise, Godly counsel where necessary. Otherwise, do what you think is best with confidence. If you have a flesh pattern of indecisiveness like I had for many years before I understood this, you may feel shaky inside at first, but you will get there. Be patient with yourself and enjoy your life with Christ!
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© Mark Maulding (But feel free to share this.)