'What if it’s the wrong choice?'
'What if I’m actually supposed to go to college?'
'What if my gap year becomes a waste of time or money?'
We so often find ourselves getting caught up in what is the right answer - what does God want me to do? Sometimes we feel like we can’t hear his voice; we get confused and have no idea what decision to make.
"All the ways of a man are pure in his own eyes, but the Lord weighs the spirit." - Proverbs 16:2
I think asking the question ‘what does God say to do?’ is great; we should definitely be asking ourselves this question. However, the question we should also be asking ourselves, especially when we feel like we can’t hear His voice, is 'Are you willing to give both options to God?'. If God asked you to go to college, would you? If God asked you to take a gap year, would you?
See, I don’t think he judges us on our decision itself. I think He could use both a gap year and a college year to do incredible things in our lives!
Phew... that takes a load off from the decisions we make, huh?
Although, I do believe that God is looking at our heart intentions in the decisions we have in front of us. How will we choose to love God with our choices?
"If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is your life appears, then you also will appear with him in glory." - Colossians 3:1-4
Here are two simple examples that may help put it into perspective...
Example one: I decide to go to college. I sought God's guidance and didn't feel any major tug towards going or not going. But I desire to go to college so that I can glorify God through my works and acquire a degree that may help me with ministry opportunities in the future. Those are great heart intentions for wanting to go to college!
Example two: I decide to go to college because it’s the social norm, it's "what I'm supposed to do." I didn’t ask God for guidance on if I should go or not because I feel like I need a degree to make money and I’m afraid I’ll be unsuccessful in life without it.
The second example shows that I don't believe God can lead me in finding success or provide financially in my life unless I go to college. My heart has now limited God and his ability to provide for me a job, an income, and success without a degree, which we all know He can definitely do; He is all powerful! In example two, I also never took into account what God's plan was for me; I chose to not include Him.
All this is not to say that college is a bad choice or the wrong decision. It’s actually an incredible opportunity God can use to propel you into future ministries, and of course, allow you to gain qualifications for professions that may definitely require a degree (e.g. a doctor). There are many, many Christians with degrees doing kingdom work in their field all over the world! Also, God is not looking to destroy your plans if you do decide to go to college. He will always want what is best for you and will move in whatever circumstances you ever find yourself in!
Here’s the thing guys, God is a wild wild lover. He’s not mundane and He’s definitely not predictable, which is probably the scariest thing for us. We often want to put God in a box and say, "Here’s my plan, God. I'm sticking to it," which funny enough, He’ll actually let us do. God will never go against our free will.
But here’s a reason you may not be hearing God’s voice in times of big decisions. You ready?... God desires to be invited into the decisions you make because he hopes your decisions are ultimately choosing Him, choosing to love Him. God loves love and he loves to be loved by YOU! Whoa, that's a lot of love to break down! Basically, God desires for you to choose Him, to include Him in your plans, to follow Him within whatever paths you journey.
And don't get me wrong, God can definitely also speak loudly and boldly! Please, by all means, follow the direct voice of the Lord and do it with a humble and serving heart!
But in those moments of uncertainty, when you're not sure what's the best next decision, start asking yourself this... Does your heart desire to be stretched, to seek God, to be uprooted and healed from the past, to be drawn closer to Him? If so, then I think most people will easily already know the decision they should make.
If not, if you believe that you deserve to sit in mud, that your desires will never get met, that loneliness will follow you no matter what you decide - then you’ve already made your decision to not believe in the promises and hope of God.
He desires so much goodness for you. I hope you choose it!