For you shall go out with joy, and be led out with peace…
Here, in five words, is a principal I was taught years ago – follow peace.
It is the rule I adhere to when making any important decision. Yes, I follow forms of reason and logic as well, but peace has the final say because I have learned that God speaks through peace – and the devil cannot.
Recognize this – for it is foundational. Over and over Jesus, the Prince of Peace, promises us His peace. We are assured that while our minds are stayed on Him we will be in perfect peace (I’ve experienced this while touring the inside of the fiery furnace!). On the other hand, confusion and doubt, worry and fear – these come only from Satan.
So, in the end, finding the path is a fairly simple thing. When faced with a decision, needing to choose between two things and failing to recognize the obviously right option, I choose both – one at a time.
My doctor told me I was pregnant and immediately informed me that he didn’t deliver babies anymore. I was instantly thrown into turmoil, not knowing who to go to, who I should trust with the delivery of my child. I began researching my options, which I had recently learned included midwifery, and writing out the pros and cons of each. Even so, I was still unable to make a decision. Then I remembered what I had been taught – “Be led by peace” – and decided to decide, and in deciding to see where peace might be found.
I decided to go with a doctor. Almost before the decision was fully made, my insides were churning. To say there was no peace would be to make a gross understatement.
So I decided again – this time to make an appointment with the midwife I’d been hearing about. Peace flooded my soul in that very moment.
I will not say the decision is always as clear. Sometimes both options bring peace. Since God authors peace and the devil cannot, I take this as a sign that both options are equally acceptable to God and the choice really is my own. Sometimes neither option brings peace. When this occurs, I start looking around for a third option, one I’d either not considered or had cast aside earlier. If there truly is no third option I look to myself, seeking out anything in me that might be blocking the peace God sends my way.
What I find could be fear, unforgiveness…any number of things, but put simply it is sin. Once I’ve dealt with the sin and go back to the options, sincerely choosing each in turn, one will almost always inspire peace, making itself clear as God’s choice.
I’m an organizer – a list person. I love researching my options and listing the pros and cons of them all, organizing my thoughts to the tiniest detail, but when the rubber meets the road and the decision must be made I would much rather let He Who Knows All make it for me, and then lead me forth in peace.