9/16/09

Seven "Cs" for Making Wise Choices

A few years ago, a young woman (I'll call "Jennie") asked me how I made choices. She explained that she felt making choices was like throwing options at a wall and seeing what would stick – in other words, watching to see what God would bless. In the process, she made many bad choices. I told Jennie, "The Bible gives some clear principles that can guide us in making big decisions and everyday choices." I said I’d get back to her with some helpful information; and after some research, I made a bookmark with seven principles and gave it to Jennie to keep in her Bible. I’d like to share those concepts here (expanded a bit) to encourage you, my readers:

The Principle of Conscience. Does it bring glory to God? (1 Corinthians 10:31) Would this embarrass the Lord? (Matthew 24:44) Can God bless this choice? (Proverbs 10:22) Can you openly thank God? (Colossians 3:17)
The Principle of Counsel. Does God’s Word give direction or confirm His will? (Psalm 119:105) Have you prayed about this? (Proverbs 3:6; 19:21) Have you sought godly counsel? (Psalm 1:1) Am I getting the same direction from a number of sources? (Proverbs 11:14b; 15:22)
The Principle of Convictions. What are your beliefs and values? (Romans 14:1-9) Are you walking in integrity and godliness? (Psalm 25:21; Proverbs 11:3)
The Principle of Cause. What is your motive? (Colossians 3:23)
The Principle of Control. Is this Spirit-led or fleshly? (John 16:13; Galatians 5:16; 22-23) Do I have peace in my heart from the Spirit of God? (Isaiah 26:3; John 14:26-27) Does God seem to be leading? (Isaiah 30:21; Proverbs 2:3-6; 3:5-6) Would Satan be the victor? (1 Peter 5:8-9a) Who is your Master? (Matthew 6:24).
The Principle of Consequences. Are there any potential consequences? (Galatians 6:7) Does it edify you and others? (1 Corinthians 10:23) Is it worldly or carnal? (1 John 2:15) Is it a hindrance? (Hebrews 12:1) Have you counted the cost? (Luke 14:28) What account will you give? (Matthew 12:36)
The Principle of Concern. Is it a stumbling block? (1 Corinthians 8:9) Does it encourage love and unity? (Romans 13:8, 10)

There are, no doubt, many other possible principles to consider. For example, my friend, Pam Farrel, has another list that she calls “C’s for Clarity.” Her list will help a person decide whether something is God’s dream, or whether it’s time to refocus (see Woman of Confidence, Harvest House Publishers, 2009, p. 184). The point is, we are wise to consider many factors before we move ahead with our decisions and dreams.

Reflection: What is the hardest principle for you to follow regarding choices?

Related Blogs: Reasons, Not Excuses, Not Choosing Blindly, and Of Paper Clips and Proactive Choices

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