Sometimes (maybe often is a better word) I over-think a decision. Whether it’s what to eat for dinner, what to say in a text message, or how much to share on social media, I put in a good deal of thought.
In his book “The Parody of Choice,” Dr. Barry Schwartz says it’s important for people to feel like they have choices when making decisions in life. And the only way we learn about the wide variety of choices we have is by obtaining knowledge and accumulating information.
Yet, having too much information at my fingertips, which is characteristic of our world today, I become overwhelmed. On top of that, as we get older, we’re continually learning new perspectives, growing into new attitudes; thus, the endless choices and pressure to choose perfectly every single time seems paralyzing! That pressure also drains some of the freedom out of life.
Then you bring in the constant battle of Kingdom versus world. Enter Grace. With Grace comes “You will never be perfect; Jesus was perfect, and He made a way for you. So rest. Seek the Lord, give Him glory, and live.”
Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life? Matthew 6:27
“We can stop pleading with God to show us the future, and start living and obeying like we are confident that He holds the future.” Kevin DeYoung
So maybe it’s not so much about WHAT we do, but HOW we’re doing it. Maybe it’s more like this: “Do what you want, go where you want, but for God’s glory, not your own.” This overarching desire (and the Holy Spirit) will direct your path without you fully realizing it.
Overthinking oftentimes robs some of the adventure, risk, freedom, fun of a situation or experience. I worry, which is far from resting in the promises and freedom in Christ. I think it’s a bigger picture: the decision to be in God’s will is a daily decision to go His way, to seek His face, to submit to His Lordship, to honor Him. To be honest, I can almost always find my indecisiveness or overthinking rooted in fear of man, or a desire for approval from the world, not in wisdom or love. Which then leaves me tired and discouraged.
It reminds me of a line from Bob Goff’s Love Does,
“It was Jesus who taught me there was nothing I could really lose if I had Him.”
Fear of missing out because we made the wrong choice, paralyzing perfectionism over the right outfit or attitude or plan… when we’re under the shadow of His wings, we don’t ever truly lose what is important. And then, we’re free to make decisions based on our confidence, our passions, His peace. We can focus on the people and situations in which we find ourselves, not be anxious, but enjoy.
Can you relate to my tendency to overthink or be indecisive?
Martha Lutier says
I am there – all the time – and it does paralyze you! Thanks for the insight!
Great blog! I feel comfortable when I stay here :) Many thanks!
Chelsea B.E. says
I’m glad, Marsha!