As church leaders we can get caught up in risk analysis, using tools like SWOT which have us consider our strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats when making decisions, or weighing the pros and cons. But, where does prayer come into the picture? Where does trusting God fit into our decisions? How do our decisions reflect faith in God’s power? How do verses like the following relate to the decision-making process?
Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. (Eph. 3:20-21)
By his power he may fulfill every good purpose of yours and every act prompted by your faith. (2 Thess. 1:11)
for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose. (Phil. 2:13)
Some Do’s and Don’ts about Decision-making and Faith in God’s Power:
1) Do ask big enough questions.
If as a church leader you primarily seem to be making decisions only about temporal issues to keep the church or ministry running, perhaps it is time to ask how much of what you do is “prompted by your faith” and how much you are truly seeking “to fulfill HIS good purpose.” Are you asking questions that require you to pull on God’s power?
2) Don’t limit answers to merely what is in front of you.
Remember that God is “able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us.” This is the Almighty God who created the heavens and earth (Jer. 51:15-16; Heb. 11:3), who fed a multitude from just a little boy’s lunch (Jn. 6:5-13), and who raised Jesus from the dead (1 Cor. 6:14). Nothing is too hard for Him (Jer. 32:27; Matt. 17:20; Mk. 10:27). Do your decisions reflect faith in this kind of God?
3) Don’t get so locked into the answers you arrive at that you leave no room for God to “do immeasurably more.”
Perhaps you arrived at the right decision. God, however, may want to take you to the next level, to do “immeasurably more” than you thought of. Are you open to experience all God has for you or are you so rigid in your decision-making that you miss out on what else God desires for you? Do you wear blinders that prevent you from seeing “his power that is at work within” to do even more?
4) Do give God the credit for the outcomes.
If decision-making has included the above three points, then when we experience “more than we ask or imagine” because of His power at work, let’s be sure to attribute the glory to Him. Are you crediting the results to your exceptional decision-making skills or to “God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose”?