Biblical Decision-Making Checklist

Biblical Decision-Making Checklist

Biblical Decision-Making Checklist

  • Have I paused long enough to consider what God’s Word might have to say on this topic?  (“Your Word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path.” – Psalm 119:105)
  • Have I sought and received wise, Godly counsel? (“Plans fail for lack of counsel, but with many advisers, they succeed.”  – Proverbs 15:22)
  • Have I yielded my will to the Father – searching for His way, His time and not my own? (“…not my will, but yours be done.” – Luke 22:42b)
  • Have I spent enough time in prayer about this? (“…pray continually” – 1 Thessalonians 5:17)
  • Have I gathered all of the necessary information?  (“For which of you, desiring to build a tower, does not first sit down and count the cost, whether he has enough to complete it?” – Luke 14:28)
  • Have I performed a sufficiently objective motive check? (“All a person’s ways seem pure to them, but motives are weighed by the Lord.” – Proverbs 16:2)
  • Am I risking “analysis paralysis” by holding out for a perfect solution?  (Learning from mistakes is part of leading … so am I willing to accept that I might be wrong?)
  • Am I distinguishing facts from opinions and facing reality as it is – not as I/we hope it to be?
  • Am I falling for a shiny object and potentially deceiving myself based on the attractive/convincing way something is presented?
  • Am I following the crowd or placing undue reliance on consensus? (Am I brave enough to be the only one who is “wrong” when something just doesn’t seem right/best?)
  • Am I rushing/risking too much?  (Have I pressed to discover the actual/true decision “deadline?”  Have I taken all of the available time to gather information, pray, ponder, research, etc.?) 
  • Am I placing excess reliance on my gut instinct?  (Is my/our analytical thinking given proper weight?  Is there a way to test my/our hunches with low-risk experiments?)
  • Am I married to my own idea or does the best idea truly have the freedom to win?
  • Have I accurately sized up all of the potential consequences/outcomes of each possible course of action (vs. just the most obvious/immediate ones)?
  • Does the implementation plan contain time-phased measurement metrics that I have actually calendared (vs. merely intended) for a “Plan-Do-Check-Adjust” follow-up?  Are these success/failure measurement metrics, and exit-ramps tight enough that we can abort the mission at the right juncture if necessary?
  • Am I allowing myself to be constrained by a false dichotomy of “either-or” vs. “both-and?”
  • Am I suffering from the self-serving bias? (i.e., protecting my self-esteem by pursuing a solution that shines the best light on me.)
  • Is “cognitive fluency” misleading me?  Just because something is easy to understand doesn’t make it true.  Is there an “illusion of truth” sucking me into its vortex?
  • Is my aversion to loss causing me to overlook the sunk cost fallacy (when I should be focusing on future cost and benefit, not past loss)?
  • Am I aware of my own confirmation bias (i.e., searching for/giving greater weight to evidence that confirms my beliefs/existing preferences)?