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Brilliant on the Basics, Personal Growth

Brilliant on the Basics: Six

Brilliant on the basic of Decision Making

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Brilliant on the Basics: Six

Brilliant on the basic of Decision Making

06 January 2011

Decisions! Decisions! Decisions! They are the essence of life. Each day we are faced with decisions. Should I get married? Should I remain single? Should I buy this car or that car? Should I go to college or take a job? Should I take a new job or stay in the old one? Should I invest in this stock or that? Should we try to have children now or wait? Every day we make decisions. I am often asked, “How can I be sure I am making the decision God wants me to make?” It is the continuing quest of the Christian to “know God’s will for his or her life.” Paul tried to take the mystery out of decision making for us when he wrote, (Rom. 12:1–2 NIV) Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God—this is your spiritual act of worship. 2 Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.

Some things you need to know to make decisions that please God and bring you blessing:

1. God’s way is always a good way – (Rom. 12:2 NIV) Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. Paul used the word for “good” that means “profitable or beneficial.” Some people are afraid to seek God’s will for fear that He will place them in an uncomfortable place, an undesirable place, doing something they would hate doing. That is not true! God has shaped you with likes and dislikes that He is aware of, and His will does not lead in undesirable places. He would never ask you to do anything that would be damaging to you in any way. He is the same one of whom Paul wrote in (Romans 8:28 NIV) And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. God wants what is good for you; therefore, do not fear His plan has to be good.

I am a good example of what I am talking about here. I felt at early times in my life that God was calling me to preach, but I didn’t necessarily like it. I initially resisted. It looked frightening and restrictive to me. I wanted to serve God but to choose the place and the way. I wanted to be free to do what I wanted to do with my life. Surrendering to the ministry and telling God I would go wherever He wanted me to go felt like I was being inducted into the military service. Well, guess what.  I was inducted into the military. I didn’t want God or Uncle Sam telling me where to live and what to do with my life. But, suddenly both were. God certainly won that battle, and I did surrender my life to His will. God revealed in unmistakable ways that He was calling me to preach and with that confirmation and complete disruption of my life and plans, I got in on God’s plan, and now looking back on 43 years of ministry, I can tell you it is the best thing that ever happened to me. There are a number of people I will see in heaven the result of God’s witness through my life. I have seen miraculous things, physically, spiritually, emotionally, done through the ministry. God’s will is good!

2. God’s way is always a pleasing way – (Rom. 12:2 NIV) Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. The word Paul chose here is one that means “well pleasing, likable, satisfying.” We don’t always see it as pleasing, but we do not have the view God has. The old story of the rug is apropos. Looking at it from the bottom all we see are knurls and knots and a twisted mess. But, looking at it from the top God sees a well developed pattern and beauty and symmetry of the master designer. I have read many times the quote, “If you could know what God knows, you would always want what God wants.” His will is pleasing!

3. God’s way is always perfect – (Rom. 12:2 NIV) Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. The word Paul used is one that means “full, without error.” He is a perfect God who does not make mistakes with anything including your life and His perfect plan for you. The Greek word is one from which we get out word “telescope.” The suggestion is “God’s will sees all the way to the end.” God knows the end from the beginning, so He sets us on a way that He knows will land us where He wants us in the end of our time on this earth and all the way through eternity.

4. God’s way can be clear if you surrender everything to Him – (Rom. 12:1NIV) Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God—this is your spiritual act of worship. Here Paul means for us to remove our firm grip on our lives and let God have complete control of them. I think we have all struggled with that most of our lives. At this point in my life, I am learning to pray each day surrendering it ALL to God. It is important that we allow Him to have control over everything and trust Him with it. You cannot surrender without trusting! When we pray God have control of all of my life – physically, mentally, spiritually, sexually, socially, relationally, financially, my health, my death, all of it; we have to trust Him with it all. It is so easy to reserve some of that. We pray, “God you can have this and that, but…” And, we think, if we do not say some thing that we are not willing to trust Him with that He will accept that. That does not work. God wants to be Lord of ALL! A lot of people wouldn’t miss a worship service at their church any Sunday morning, but they are not surrendered to God which Paul said is a spiritual act of worship. If you want to worship God, surrender your life to Him. That can be done seven days a week!

5. God’s way includes non-conformity to the world – (Rom. 12:2 NIV) Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Paul said we are to avoid conformity with the world’s way of thinking and acting. Don’t go along with the crowd. Don’t let them squeeze you into their mold. Instead, be different in a godly way. Surrender to God and let Him shape your life in a way that pleases Him and performs admirably before an unbelieving world. This is a tough one for those who want to be sure to be politically correct all of the time. God is not looking for political correctness but for transformed thinking. The way we experience that is through the “renewing of our minds.” We need to pray daily to have the mind of Christ in us so that we think like Him, walk like Him, talk like Him, and act like Him. Having Christ’s mind means having a mind for the Scriptures, for selfless service, sacrifice, and spirituality. You get to choose. God wants your renewed mind engaged in the process. You can know God’s best and choose the best in all you decide for your life! Sounds strange, but through surrender you can get satisfaction!

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“Redeemed”

The painting in my logo is by an artist named Kelly O'Neill.



If you appreciate excellence in art and are captivated by works that grip your emotions and proclaim the remarkable truths of God’s Word, you will want to know more about the very compelling art piece that is part of my ministry logo.

Kelly O’Neill is a remarkable young artist who very masterfully depicts the compassion, grace, and redeeming love of Jesus Christ in her painting, “Redeemed.” No painting has so grabbed my emotions and stirred my gratitude to Christ for His redeeming love as this one. Technically unparalleled, inspired, heart-stirring, and mind captivating are words I used upon seeing it for the first time.

Getting to know Kelly and the background of her wonderful work have served as great motivators as I launch out on a new ministry path in my own life. Kelly is also the developer of my website.

I commend her and her work to you and encourage you to visit her website www.TheArtistOfLife.com

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