I couldn’t wait to be a mom and wife, but no one ever told me how hard it would be when making wise decisions in motherhood, womanhood, and marriage. Better yet, in homesteading. Or, how to even know how to make wise decisions. In my younger years I’d just go off of whatever emotion led me in that moment. But when I became a mom and wife, things changed. I wanted to not only make wise decisions, I wanted to make decisions that bettered my family. Decisions that edified my family, and uplifted my family. Decisions that made home life better, that got us farther in life.
So what does that even look like?
When we’re contemplating a new project we want to take on, a consequence our children need to learn, or maybe even something as simple as to whether or not we should expand the garden. Whatever it is, in the midst of everyday life and emotions, we have to make wise decisions for ourselves and for our families…often times without the emotions. No matter how big or small those decisions may be, how do we know if they are the right ones?
Putting Emotions Aside in Wise Decisions
Women lean a lot of their emotions when it comes to decision making. I think, often, this is why Paul talked about being aware of women leaders. I have met my fair share of women leaders who lead based purely off of emotion, and it’s not a good thing. It leads to unwise decision making.
Likewise, I’ve met a lot of amazing women leaders who don’t lead with their emotions. Women who make their decisions wisely, and Godly. But how do they do it? How do they put their emotions aside and lean into the Holy Spirit to help guide them?
I often like to remind myself of the following verse . . .
We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.
[2 Corinthians 10:5]
We must first start by realizing that our emotions are not always based in, or obedient to, Christ. God gave us emotions for a reason. God especially gave women emotions for a reason. We are caretakers and nurturers. Emotions come into play in a big way when it comes to caretaking and nurturing babies, your family, and others. But they aren’t always the most reliable anchor when we are faced with big decisions.
We can combat this by making it a point to hold every thought captive in our minds. Then, we can pray for the wisdom and knowledge of Christ without emotions playing such a key role. Always test your thoughts and decisions with the Bible and Gods word.
While this might be easier in big decisions, with more time to think, it can be much more complicated in the everyday life decisions when we have to think quickly. Practicing this every single day will be so helpful.
Does it Point Your Family to Christ?
The one thing I ask myself when making a decision is, does it point my family back to Christ? While this may not be the case when you’re trying to figure out whether you should goto dinner with friends or buy dairy goats. It could definitely be a deciding factor in other things––like going to see that new movie that is controversial, or allowing your children to read certain books that could be against God’s word, or influential on their immature mind and spirit.
Wise decisions in motherhood and womanhood are especially hard to make. You don’t want to stick out like a sore thumb in the social crowd as a woman. And if you’re a mom, you don’t want your kids to hate you either. But ultimately, making wise decisions is our responsibility. And it’s also our responsibility to always point ourselves, and our family, back to Christ.
Does it Take Me Away from My Responsibilities?
I always ask myself “will this take me away from my primary responsibilities?” I would even say that this is the most important question to ask yourself in motherhood, wifehood, and womanhood when making wise decisions.
I’m a wife and a mom before I am anything else in this life. My responsibilities are taking care of my husband and family, homemaking, and raising children. When I need to make a wise decision, I can make it by asking myself if it would take me (or time) away from my primary responsibilities. Enough time that it would hinder my responsibility in a negative way on a regular basis.
This doesn’t mean you can’t do things for you. It doesn’t mean you can’t hang out with friends or start a new job. But ultimately, the question is still important.
For example, I used to author a very popular marriage blog that took way more time than I had in life. I felt like it was something God called me to do, so I did so for many years. After having our first son, my husband mentioned how much time it took away from our family. I scoffed at the idea because my points were greater than his, or so I thought.
But as I sat in my bedroom one night, taking my thoughts captive, I was able to see that God had actually been calling me away from the blog for some time. His heart was for me to focus on my family . . . my responsibility. But it was also so that He could bring the next thing into my life later on down the road. That next thing was this this current blog. That next thing was homesteading. That next thing was more than I could’ve ever dreamed, and was a dream I never even knew I wanted.
Fast forwarding to this year, I’ve had to ask myself this question even now. I recently wanted to start a podcast for the Homesteaders of America organization. But I knew that it would take a lot more of my time than I had. So I asked myself the question, “will it take me away from my responsibilities more than necessary?” . . . and the very quick answer was, yes. So, it has been put on the back burner until I have more time.
Even the Proverbs 31 woman had a job outside of the home. But always, in every decision and action, it pointed her life back to her family. Every decision she made was for the good of her family. Everything she did was to help tend to her family. She went to the market to buy food and material. She considered a field and bought it with her own money. She took in the women who needed help. But always took care of her family first. Keep this in mind when trying to make wise decisions.
A Wise Decision Won’t Burden You
Finally, finalizing a wise decision won’t burden you. Often times our spirit knows what decision we should make. It’s called the Holy Spirit, and it’s also called discernment.
For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.
[Hebrews 4:12 – ESV]
Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.
The natural person does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are folly to him, and he is not able to understand them because they are spiritually discerned.
[1 Corinthians 2:14-ESV]
Allowing God to speak to us and through us is so important in motherhood and womanhood. We have so many things screaming at us in life that we often get distracted. Comparison, opinions, our own wants and needs––they all drown out that still small voice.
In my experience, I go with my peace. And it’s the easiest way for me to make a decision. This isn’t to be confused with God challenging you or pushing you into His will that may feel foreign to you. God will certainly ask us to go through things, or make decisions, that are difficult and out of our comfort zone. But it won’t be burdensome.
How do I know this?
Cast your burden on the Lord,
and he will sustain you;
he will never permit
the righteous to be moved.
…do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
I know this because God specifically says in the Bible that we are to cast our burdens on Him. That means He would never give us an answer that is burdensome. He may give us an answer or a decision that could grieve us, or that could challenge us, but never burden us. In Philippians it says that the peace that surpasses all understanding will guard our hearts and minds. That means that no matter what God has planned for us, there is peace in the decision. Go with you peace, friend.
In the end, if you find that you are having an extremely hard decision making process, seek wise counsel. Before that, talk with your spouse, your closest girl friends. Whoever it may be, make sure they have the same beliefs as you. And if all else fails, take it to your Pastor or someone who truly wants to invest into your life and can also help make decisions not based on emotion or personal history.
I truly hope that this blog post helps shed some light into your life if you’re trying to make a tough decision, or even just wondering how to navigate the everyday average decision.
I encourage you to subscribe to and check out my podcast, Choosing Simple. And listen to the episode here where I talk about this very topic!