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Help me decide....

People think that whatever they do is right, but the Lord judges the reasons for everything they do. Do what is right and fair. The Lord loves that more than sacrifices. (Proverbs 21:2-3 ERV)
What are the reasons behind the actions you take? This is a reasonable question, but one that may require a bit more soul-searching than we often want to make at any given moment. It is not uncommon to "act", then think of the motivation behind those actions. It usually happens as a result of the action falling short of whatever it was you thought you were doing when you acted! It is then that you look back, wondering just how quickly your actions got that off-course.
I've said this before, but it bears repeating - actions really do follow thought. We may not realize what we have been entertaining in our minds until we see the actions in play. As I have often said, having a "guard" over our thought life can be our salvation in more ways than one! We don't always know where our minds are going to take us, but when the Holy Spirit is there to stand watch over our thought life, the actions coming forth stand a more reasonable chance of being those God won't judge quite so harshly!
There are a lot of times we see people taking actions solely because they think God requires them. My friends, if the only reason we are taking an action is because we think it will somehow "win us favor" with God, those actions aren't going to hit the mark either. You have probably heard it said that to every action there is a reaction. Even actions we believe to be "holy" or "right" may not always be the best actions for us to take. There are times when the heart behind the actions just isn't in the right place, making even the "best" of actions kind of hollow.
I have discovered that since every action has a follow-up reaction, it is often quite easy to evaluate the impact of the action pretty quickly most of the time. I can get a "feel" for the impact of the action by the reaction of others who are in the path of that action. If the action was a positive one, usually the reaction will be rather positive, as well. If the action was hollow, not really genuine, the reaction is going to be equally as shallow or hollow. The action may have been "good", but was it sincere, trustworthy, and motivated by love? Really, that is the crux of the matter.
Whenever I want to change the course of the actions I am taking, I must first involve the Holy Spirit to stand guard over all present and future actions. It is too late for him to stand guard over those ones in the past, but he can begin to have an impact on my motivations and heart's desires for the present and future ones. I have to remember that my motivations and heart's desires can be "colored" by a lot of things that get heard, observed, and absorbed in my life. There is no better help to understand whether what is heard should actually be listened to, or what is observed should actually be absorbed into my life than to have the Holy Spirit reminding me of God's words on the matter at hand, or just pointing out the wisdom (or lack thereof) in the decision/action I am about to make/take. Just sayin!


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