Speaking to the Soul – May 28


Wise people think before they act; fools don’t—and even brag about their foolishness. Proverbs 13:16

Much of the wisdom that we find in the book of Proverbs is so obvious that you wonder why it needs to be said. But a moment’s reflection shows that it doesn’t just need to be said, but needs to be said repeatedly. I suspect we can all think of numerous times when we acted too quickly. Perhaps it was an impulse buy. A clever salesperson persuaded us to act quickly or an alluring advert drew us in. We may well have had some reservations, but we made the purchase and then regretted it. Or perhaps we got involved in a relationship too quickly and we had to pay the consequences.

We are told to: “Look before you leap”, but the question is: How do we slow down our decision making so that we have time to reflect and assess the options? We don’t want to be hesitating constantly about everything.

The first step is to recognise that God cares about our decision making, because every decision matters. Often small decisions are like hinges on which many other things turn. So, we would do well to ensure that every decision we make is brought before God. Nothing is too trivial for him. It may be a brief prayer in the course of a noisy and busy day, but we need to take those moments to lay our thoughts before God. And, if possible, find unhurried time to bring our plans before God. He wants to help us to make decisions that are life-giving, peaceful and wise.

Jesus pointed to the importance of planning carefully. If you build a tower, you need to make sure that you’ve got enough money to finish it. If not, Jesus pointed out, then everyone will laugh at your inability to complete the job (Luke 14:28-30). We need to think, pray and plan before we act. The advice might seem obvious but we mustn’t ever forget it.

Think of the worst decision that you have ever made. What have you learned from the experience?

Loving God, help me to be careful in all the decisions that I make. Help me to open my mind and heart to your Holy Spirit each day. Amen