Question: Several friends shared their opinions with me regarding a decision I need to make. Does God send messages to us through others?
Answer: You are correct to realize that not all friends will give you the right answer, which is God’s solution to the problem, and that you could make a bad choice based solely on others’ ideas. Be especially careful when asking for advice from someone who is not a Christian because his values will not be the same as yours, especially if you desire to please Jesus Christ with your life. Well-meaning people can sometimes give wrong guidance when it’s based on their own experiences and personal opinions.
First, pray and ask God what to do.
Ask specifically whether you should talk with a friend, and if so, which one. God is certainly able to let you know what to do, even without your consulting anyone else. You never have to depend on others to let you know God’s will for your life. When you ask Him, He will answer you in some way!
Hear my prayer, Lord…I trust you; cause me to know the way in which I should walk. Psalm 143:1, 8
Secondly, spend time with those who are Christians. You don’t have to consider the matter alone; you and a trusted friend or mentor can keep the matter private. It’s not a good idea to share a personal issue with too many people. Sometimes, you may want to share with only one other friend to make sure your personal life doesn’t become the town’s gossip. Remember to ask your friend to wait and pray about the facts and situation before answering you. Not rushing someone to answer you will allow him or her the opportunity to ask for God’s direction, too. Then, get back together and compare your answers. A key could be that you both feel led by God in the same path to take.
Oh, the joys of those who do not follow evil men’s advice, who don’t spend time around unbelievers, criticizing and making fun of the things of God. But they delight in doing everything God wants them to, and day and night are thinking about His laws and ways to follow Him more closely. Psalm 1:1-2
Finally, read the Bible for yourself. When you do, you will easily recognize right from wrong choices.
How can a young person lead a clean life before God? By reading God’s Word. With my whole heart I have asked you, God, what to do. Help me to obey your commandments. I have hidden your words in my heart and mind so I will always remember what you consider as sin. Psalm 119:9-11
How can you make sure you are understanding what God wants you to do?
He will give you a certain peace of mind about what decision to make. Don’t let your emotions cause you to act too quickly just so you can be rid of the problem. God’s way may not be the fastest and easiest way to resolve your issue, but it will definitely be the best way to benefit both you – and others, at the same time!
Here’s a prayer to help:
Dear Jesus, you know quite well the decision I have to make. You already know all the details since you know everything about me. Please give me the peace of knowing that I’m making the right choice, the one that keeps me on the path you have for my future. Because you love me so much that you died on a cross to save me from eternal punishment, I trust that you will never lead me to do wrong. Thank you for loving me and those dear to me and walking with me every step of every day so that I am never alone!
And we know that God works all things together for good for those who love Him and have been called by Him for His purposes. Romans 8:28