Monday Ministry Tip: praying for guidance

In ministry you find yourself praying many times for divine direction.  Of course you should always be seeking God in all parts of your life and ministry but sometimes there are things that weigh particularly heavily upon you and you need to think and pray through them.  These topics include, new ministry start ups, changing ministry direction, or conflict in ministry.  Often we feel frustrated when we have a lot of details that hang in the balance and we can feel very confused and timid.  Here is a process that I have found helpful to hear the voice of God and clear my head.

1.  Get alone with God.  (find a place you wont be interrupted and can have privacy.  Start by praying and asking God to illuminate your thoughts)

2.  Write it down.  Having a journal is very helpful.  I find that when i write stuff down that I am feeling then I find clarity in my thoughts.  I also can then compare them easily.

3.  Define your options.  Write out each possibility going forward that you can foresee.  Put a rough plan together of how you see each option coming into reality if you went forward.  Write down positive and negative consequences to your decision.

4.  Ask God what He is leading you toward.  If you dont feel anything don’t be alarmed.  God may be waiting to move you forward in his timing.

5.  Ask wise counsel.  Bring in unbiased, wise people who have been in your shoes and get their insight.  Sometimes God speaks strongly through them.

6.  Come back to it.  Sometimes it is best to take some time to think about it and then make a decision.  The best decisions are not made emotionally.  Coming back  to a problem a couple of days later, usually brings fresh insight.

Let me know your thoughts and any other best practices you may know of.

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Tony Barnette
12 years ago

Good tips. I struggle with journaling. Do you use a certain technique or just write down what comes to mind? I know it seems kinda basic, I just find myself at a loss as to write sometimes.