I often write about decision-making because decisions are an inescapable part of life. For years I’ve told you about my “just flip a coin” philosophy. You’ve analyzed. You’ve agonized. You prayed. You still don’t know what to do. Flip a coin to decide.
No, the coin itself is not anointed. Although, I’ll shamefully admit that in my 20’s I used to anoint the coin with holy oil before I flipped it. SMH!! You can’t unchurch a church girl! The coin is a tool to help you better understand what God has placed in your heart.
If you make decisions without consulting God, this won’t work for you. Your coin toss will lead to more selfish misdirection. But, if you are genuinely concerned about living your purpose and doing it in the way that yields the highest return for you and God, just flip a coin.
Some decisions are made by simply asking “What did Jesus Do?” Those are easy. We’re talking about the very personal decisions that God leaves up to you. The ones that don’t have a clear scripture direction, like which college to go to or what job to take. No, there’s no biblical principle that directly tells you what to do. But there is always a scripture to help guide you.
Psalm 37:4 says, “Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you your heart’s desires.” This does not mean that God will meet your every whim. It means that if you stay connected to God, he will fill your heart with purpose and passion for the things he’s created for you. When you’re not sure what you want to do, flip a coin. Pray. Tell God that you want to do whatever yields the greatest return for His glory and your good. Ask him, “Show me, Lord.”
Grab a coin. Call it out. Flip. The flip will reveal what’s in your heart.
Here’s what I mean…
Early in my career, I was presented with an opportunity to move to Detroit for a promotion. I was living in Boston at the time. Neither city offered me palm trees and 52 weekends at the beach so I was indifferent about the geographies. My pros and cons list was pretty equal for each choice. I could go either way. So, I followed the process above and flipped a coin.
Heads I go. Tails I stay.
That American eagle perched in front of me made my heart sink. It told me to stay and I was disappointed. It was at that moment that I knew deep down inside I really wanted to go. God had placed a desire in my heart to go but for whatever reason, I could not access it. I had infused opinions, obligations, advice, and anecdotes into my decision making process. They covered the true desire of my heart. The minute I saw that “tail” I knew. I did not want to stay in Boston any longer.
Thirteen months after moving to Detroit, I was presented with a big opportunity for promotion in Connecticut. Again, no palm trees so I flipped the coin. Heads, I go. Tails, I stay. It was heads. I didn’t follow the coin this time, either. I followed what God had put in my heart. I was excited. I wanted that job so I packed up again and moved to Hartford.
The coin did not dictate my decision in either case. It won’t make your decision, either. The coin only helps you figure out what’s in your heart. Some psychologists say you don’t need to flip the coin at all. They say that whatever you assign as “heads” is what you really want to do. I’m not sure if that’s true or not. But here’s what I do know is true. If you lean on God, he will show you the way you should go. Don’t trust in the coin, or the holy oil, or the new opportunity. Trust God to keep his promise to “make your path straight.”
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not to your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him and he will make your path straight.“Proverbs 3:5-6