Dear People Who Keep Company With God,
When I was an engineer the company sent some of us to a week of leadership development with a behavioral psychologist. The purpose was to help us understand ourselves, others, and to become better decision makers. Everything we did that week was planned and part of the program. I spent the week living with a group of strangers, but by the weekend I knew them quite well.
We took several different types of personality tests, were put in simulated situations, sometimes without our knowledge that required interaction with others, leadership and decision-making. The psychologist monitored and evaluated our decisions, reactions and attitudes the entire week. The peer group also did some evaluations. That was especially eye opening. Some of it was not very flattering, but it was helpful.
I discovered I make decisions mostly by intuition and sensing versus logic, experience and data. I was categorized as an irrational decision maker. Sounds bad, but it is not. In other words, I tend to trust information that is more abstract or theoretical that can be connected with known information to make decisions. In the engineering world I was frequently in situations where I had to make decisions with not all the facts known and most of the time I was right when I went with my intuition.
We all would probably agree that a mother’s intuition should be trusted. For the believer we have the Holy Spirit informing our conscience and I believe listening to the inner voice of our conscience is the way God originally designed us to make decisions. That does not mean logic, experience and data are not important. They should be considered and used to serve our decisions, but they should not always rule our decisions.
Logic, experience and data tend to dominate decision making because the known outweighs or outnumbers the unknown. We live in the information age so we have lots of data and experience readily available to help us make our decisions. That is a gift and I value it, but only to the extent it serves in making decisions.
When the reverse is true, when the experience and data no longer applies or is not available, we lean more heavily on what our instinct tells us. As our world seems to be moving toward more and more uncertainty, with economics, politics, and society all experiencing shifts and upheavals, the unknowns are likewise beginning to increase and intuitive decision-making becomes more and more critical.
I think if you ask any business person they would tell you they are having to lean more and more on intuitive decision-making. That is certainly true in the church world. What was true only a few short years ago in the practicalities of stewarding and leading a local congregation does not necessarily apply now.
Last year when we went through our building crisis I approached the path forward decision making on a team concept. However, some of the most critical decisions came up in the moment. There was no time or space to convene a meeting. I had to rely on the little facts I knew, but more importantly on what my intuition was telling me. By the grace of God those decisions turned out right.
The way to develop a strong and holy intuition is Paul’s prayer in Ephesians 3:14-20. It is a prayer for the government of God to rule our inner man and for Christ to live His life through our heart and thus, our intuition. The love of God is the ground for this.
Be assured that if you seek for Christ to live and rule in your heart you can trust that God has given you His peace to umpire your heart and intuition (Col. 3:15). As long as your peace is not violated that is the general indication that your decision is in line with the Father’s heart.
Many Blessings, BW