Basic Tools 12: A Guide for Decision-Making

Missionaries need a guide for decision making.

Overview:  Discovering your daily missions and carrying them out involves a lot of decision making.  Some of your decisions are big; some are small.  Here are some factors in every decision—large or small.

We all have to make decisions every day and some of them can be very difficult.  Both as you work toward your road map and as you put it into action, you’ll have to make a lot of decisions.  What can help you to discern God’s will for your daily missions—and the specific aspects of working them out?  Humanity has wrestled with these questions in every generation!  Here we consider some factors to guide our decision making.  Begin with prayer to discern God’s will for you; consider the five factors below; and use any new insight that comes to you.

1.  Alternatives:  Outline the possible choices.

2.  Motives:  Examine your motives and base your choice on love and justice.  Try to be honest about self-serving, hidden, or unconscious motives.

3.  Ends:  Check that your goal is also based on love and justice.

4.  Means:  Think about how you will go about achieving your goals.  Restrain self-interest and work for the greater good of everyone involved.

5.  Outcomes:  Anticipate the possible outcomes; determine which one will be better for all involved—or at least as many others as is possible.

After considering these factors, make your decision and offer it to God.  Ask God to help you to carry it out where it is right and to help you to correct it where it is wrong.

[For more on decision making, see Chapter 11, “Decision Making for the Missionaries,” of When the Members are the Missionaries, pp. 129-132.]