What are your thoughts on food buffets? One of the benefits to a buffet is that… it’s a buffet… there are endless choices that leave you with a wide variety of food options to choose from, so you are bound to find something that satisfies your appetite. At the same time, one of the downsides to a buffet is that… it’s a buffet… there are so many choices you can have a hard time deciding what to eat. Additionally, because there are many options, you probably won’t find anything that’s cooked really, really well like what you’d find at a restaurant that specializes in a particular food. So what does all of this buffet talk have to do with anything? When it comes to making choices in life, do you think God serves up a buffet or a limited selection?
This past Sunday, we used Matthew 6:19-34 to really challenge us on what it means to pursue God over possessions. We also discussed how worry often emerges from our misguided pursuits. (If you missed the teaching or want to hear it again, then just click HERE). We reach different seasons in life where our decisions can become complex because many variables are at stake… Do I take this job or that one? Should we buy this house or that one? Should we pay for private school or send our kids to public school? What major should I pursue in college? Who should I marry? These are all questions that have a ripple effect on our lives depending on the exact decision we make.
In the midst of these situations, we are often told to seek God’s wisdom. This is great advice. James 1:5 actually tells us to ask God for wisdom when we are lacking it. So as we wait for God to give us an answer, I want you to consider my previous question… Do you think God serves up a buffet of options or a limited selection? Could it be that God gives us multiple options or is there one perfect answer that will keep us in His will?
If you’ve read this blog before, then you might be able to guess where I’m going with the answer to this question… I think it could be both!
Take for example a scenario where you are interviewing for multiple jobs and you get multiple offers. Are you going to be sinning against God if you take one over the other? Assuming your job itself doesn’t cause you to have to sin to perform your responsibilities, I think you are okay with picking the job you want! Who’s to say God wouldn’t present you with various options? Where in the Bible does it say there’s only one perfect answer for every scenario? I haven’t found those verses yet, but all too often, we put that pressure on ourselves as if there’s only one answer that will keep us right with God. Look, you are right with God because of Jesus and the identity He has given to you if you’ve trusted Him as your Savior. Picking one option out of two good options will not put your relationship with Jesus in jeopardy.
Now, with that being said, I think wisdom comes in play by applying principles of Scripture to your situation. For example, ask yourself WHY you would take one job over the other? What type of stress will come from one job vs the other? If one opportunity gives you more money, will it require you to work more hours? If so, how does that impact your relationships? The more you see God’s heart in Scripture, the more He will show you how one decision may impact your life as compared to another.
On the other hand, God can also give you a limited selection of options. He may call you to live in a certain area (limited selection) and you have to trust He will provide everything else you need. Perhaps He leads you to pursue a certain job or career… For example, in my life, God has clearly not called me to sing or do a job that requires mechanical expertise although at times I would’ve liked to be able to do either one. Therefore, my options are limited because of how He has made me. The same goes for you. God has made you and gifted you just as He wanted you to be, and because of that, you should work within the bounds of who you are. Don’t try to be everything or even something that you aren’t. Trust how God has made you and embrace the limited options you have.
What’s the takeaway from this post?… Understand that God has a plan, and His plans have limited, specific aspects that are unique to you. However, don’t just assume that God lacks the creativity needed to give you multiple options at times where each one could teach you something important about Him and yourself in whatever option you choose. In other words, don’t show up to the buffet and then be frustrated because you have many options. Likewise, don’t ask for clarity and complain because there aren’t more doors that have opened. Making decisions are always more about the process than the end product. Ask God what He wants to teach you in this season while you make decisions, and perhaps, as you commit your way to Him and find your delight in Him, He will act and give you the clarity you desire! (Psalm 37:4-5)