Are you a quick decision maker? As a rule, I’m not.
We recently bought new furniture for our living room, which was a whole decision-making process on its own. Now I’m updating some of the accessories, like lamps and curtains and pillows. So I’ll come home with, for example, a new lampshade. I’ll put it on the lamp and let it sit there for a few days while I decide if I like how it looks with everything else in the room. The same thing happens with the curtains. I have faith that at some point, it will all come together, but it may take a while!
Those decisions are relatively unimportant in the overall scheme of life. But we often have to make decisions with real, long-lasting consequences. They could involve changing jobs or careers, parenting decisions, moving to a different area of the country, or setting boundaries in a difficult relationship. And while those might all be “big” decisions, there are plenty of smaller decisions we make every day.
We need direction in so many areas. Because we want God to lead us, we go to Him in prayer. As we do that, here are ten things we can pray for as we seek His guidance in any decision.
1. A clear path.
Lead me, O Lord, in thy righteousness because of mine enemies; make thy way straight before my face. ~Psalm 5:8
Lord, show me how to live rightly before you. Make my way plain and my path clear. Help me to easily discern what I should do, and don’t let me lose my way. Remove hindrances that would distract me from the way I should go.
2. To know the next right step.
The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord: and he delighteth in his way. Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down: for the Lord upholdeth him with his hand. ~Psalm 37:23-24
Lord, direct and establish my steps so that I don’t stumble. Guide me as I take each step, especially when I don’t know exactly where the road will lead. Arrange circumstances to help me make the right choice. When I go the wrong way, thank you that you stay right there with me, and bring me back on track. Thank you that my failures aren’t permanent. I pray that you would delight in my way and find pleasure in my obedience.
3. God’s purpose to be accomplished.
And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. ~Romans 8:28
Dear God, I am confident that everything that happens in my life works together for my good as I’m following you. You have a purpose and a plan for my life that I can’t always see and understand. Help me to simply trust you.
4. To recognize that God’s plan is good.
For the LORD God is a sun and shield: the LORD will give grace and glory: no good thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly. ~Psalm 84:11
God, here in your Word you promise that if I walk honestly before you then you won’t withhold from me anything that is good for me. Show me where I’m falling short. Then let me embrace all that you send as good for me. May I realize that what I don’t have isn’t your best for me right now.
If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. ~James 1:5
Father, give me wisdom as I seek your guidance. I know my own wisdom is not sufficient. Thank you that you don’t scold me for lacking wisdom, but you offer yours to me in abundance. The gift of wisdom is a promise from you, Lord, and I believe that you will give it to me.
6. Be faithful to God’s Word.
Shew me thy ways, O Lord; teach me thy paths. Lead me in thy truth, and teach me: for thou art the God of my salvation; on thee do I wait all the day. ~Psalm 25:4-5
Lord, give me a heart that is willing to be led and taught by you. May decisions I make be based on the truth of your Word. You will never lead me away from that.
7. Holy Spirit leading.
Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come. ~John 16:13
As a Christian, I know that your Holy Spirit lives inside me. May I be sensitive to His leading as I open your Word and as I pray. Help me to be still and listen to how He may be leading me.
And this I pray, that your love may abound yet more and more in knowledge and in all judgment; That ye may approve things that are excellent; that ye may be sincere and without offense till the day of Christ. ~Philippians 1:9-10
Dear Lord, give me discernment. As I gather information, point me in the right direction. Help me make the best choice, not just settle for what’s right in front of me. Reveal to me weaknesses in my thinking that could lead me away from what you would have me to do.
9. God’s timing.
Wait on the Lord: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the Lord. ~Psalm 27:14
May I wait on you and not run ahead. Your timing is always best. Give me courage and strengthen me as I wait. Help me know when it’s time to take action.
10. God’s peace.
Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. ~Philippians 4:6-7
God, I’m bringing this need for guidance to you in prayer. Thank you that I can trust you to guide me rightly. I leave this decision in your hands and claim the peace you’ve promised in this verse. Keep my heart from being anxious and my mind from conjuring up worst-case scenarios. I trust you to guide me. Thank you for your peace and that I can rest in what you’re going to do.
May God guide each one of us as we seek His leadership in making our decisions!