This week Daniel and I had to make a big decision quickly. We also have friends that are making huge decisions this week and asked for our insight. Sometimes we need to make life altering decisions over a few days time. In an ideal world we would always have ample time to pray, seek God’s will, and endless kid-free hours to weigh all the options.
A quick decision may need to be made when you are faced with a job offer, an offer on the sale of your home, an opportunity to move, making a huge purchase, or any other heavy decision. The very first step is to pray for God’s direction and wisdom. After you prayed then you will probably examine on the pros and cons. To help you examine a decision I have created a few reflection questions.
Here are 10 quick yes or no questions to ask yourself before making a huge decision.
1. Does the result from this deal go against the Word of God?
I believe God will never ask us to do anything that goes against His Word. He will never ask us to be dishonest or cheat. I would even say that debt is never a blessing from God. Getting your dream car with a 5-year car loan is not a blessing from God. He has the means to provide you with a car that isn’t hindered by a car payment.
2. Does the result of this decision align with my long term goals?
Our dream is travel the world with our family and we know the first step is to pay off our debt. Anything that gets us out of debt will always be in line with our goals. Perhaps your dream is to live in a place with grass for the kids to run or to own your own business.
3. Is my spouse 100% on board with this decision?
Dragging your spouse into a situation that they weren’t on board with from the start will never end well. If both spouses are 100% in agreement and something goes wrong, then both can accept responsibility without the temptation to blame the other spouse. Daniel and I were both on board when we took a pay cut to quit client work. No matter what happened we were in it for better or worse.
4. Can I make this decision later?
There may be times when we feel like we are too far into a deal to quit. Unless you have signed on a dotted line without any refund, then maybe you can make this decision later. You can always turn down a job offer. You can always refuse an offer to buy your home. You can always say no at the cash register. Don’t be pressured to make a decision when there is a way out.
5. Will this decision adversely affect your quality of life? If so, are you okay with this new quality of life?
Perhaps the decision is to take a new job, but the job will require many 10 hour days. This would create a burden on the spouse to take care of the house and the kids. Also, the job would mean less time with family and friends. The new job may add 30 minutes to your usual 15 minute commute. Are you willing to sit in traffic for 90 minutes every work day? Look for areas where your quality of life may diminish.
6. Can I handle the worst that can happen as a result of this deal?
If the worst that happens is you miss out on going on a trip, then maybe you can handle the worst. However if the worst that could happen is that you or someone in your family may die, then maybe you can’t handle the worst. Usually the worst is something that can handled. By facing the worst head on you can subtract a lot of fear and misgivings about a decision.
7. Am I willing to accept the opportunity cost for this deal?
Maybe you have an opportunity to travel to Uganda and serve in an amazing ministry, but then you would miss your brother’s wedding. What things would you be missing by spending your time outside of the country? If you were spending a large sum of money, then what else would you spend that money on?
8. Are my trusted friends who know me well in agreement and excited for me?
Daniel and I have close friends that have known us for years that we like to get feedback from on major decisions. We can tell if they are excited or not. Our friends don’t always have the same goals that we do, but they know us and want us to achieve our goals. It is important that your friends know you and want the best for you.
9. Do I have peace about this decision?
I believe that God gave us the Holy Spirit to guide us. If you aren’t sure if you have peace, then stop and take 5 minutes to calm down and figure it out.
10. Is the result of this deal an answer to prayer?
If you have been praying for provision and you get a job offer, then that could be answer to prayer. The answer to prayer may not always look like what you expected. Only you know if you have been praying about this situation or not. Ask yourself what you have been praying for and examine if this decision is answer.
Making a quick decision can be tricky, because you don’t want to make a wrong move and be in a worse position that you started. This is one reason why it is important to have a family goal, so it makes decisions easier to make.
Have you ever had to make a decision quickly? Do you have a family long term goal?