Forum Summary: Four Keys to Successful Decision-Making

Author: Ryan Price | Student, Living Education – Charlotte, 2021-22

Estimated Reading Time: 3 min.

When we’re young, there are so many unknowns to face.

We make decisions every day of our lives, and God wants us to develop the capacity to make good decisions as part of our training, whether the decisions involve spiritual questions or the physical decisions that impact us in so many unexpected ways. Sound decision-making is one of the primary lessons we are to learn in this life. In this week’s Forum, Dr. Jeffrey Fall shared with the Living Ed students four key principles to good decision-making.

Key 1. Get the Facts

Sometimes, you won’t have all the information, and making a poorly informed decision can end in disaster. If we gather all the facts, we get more pieces of the puzzle, which will give us a clearer picture of the situation. As an example, in Joshua 24—at the end of Joshua’s life—Israel had to make a decision. There were those who were loyal to God, those who were attracted to the Canaanite gods and customs, and the majority who hadn’t yet decided. God, through Joshua, laid out the facts—how He had led them from Egypt and intervened on their behalf many times. Joshua 24:16-18 shows us that when faced with the evidence, Israel made the right choice in this case.

Key 2. Seek Counsel

As human beings, we have a tendency to “go it alone” and try to figure things out for ourselves, yet Proverbs 11:14 shows us that counsel is an important part of decision-making. When we receive good counsel, it can open our eyes to aspects of the decision we might not have seen before. Seeking counsel may not come naturally at first, but when we do so, we embrace God’s way of passing on spiritual insight to us. However, we need to be careful to seek counsel from the right sources. As Psalm 1:1 tells us, we should avoid seeking counsel from the ungodly.

Key 3: Set Your Priorities in Order

Not every priority should hold the same value as we make decisions. God expects us to discern the weightier matters of the law and ask ourselves, “What would God’s highest priority be in this situation?” Our goal is to set our priorities in line with His priorities. For instance, while the Sabbath is a day of rest, we go to Services because being with our brethren and learning more about His way is a higher priority than just physically resting. As 2 Timothy 2:15 tells us, we are to be “rightly dividing the word of truth”—setting our priorities in the right order.

Key 4: Ask God for Directions

Even when we have the facts and have received proper counsel, the right decision won’t always be obvious. Going to God in prayer is a valuable decision-making tool, as is fasting about the decision. In Isaiah 58:1–11, God promises that He will guide us continually if we do our part. Fasting over a decision and asking God to show us His will brings nothing but benefit to us. Even if God’s answer to our question is no, we can take comfort in the fact that He knows what’s best for us.

We will make countless decisions throughout our lives; God won’t do it all for us. He’s teaching us the principles of proper decision-making. As we go through life, we can have confidence in these principles designed by our Father. He is seeking children who can make successful decisions, and He is always looking out for our best interests.