If You’re Afraid You’ll Make the Wrong Decision

by Abby McDonald August 15, 2023
“Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, 'This is the way; walk in it.'” Isaiah 30:21 (NIV)

We weren’t on the trail for long before we had to make a decision. A fork in the path presented two different options: If we turned to the right, a steep incline of steps and uneven rocks greeted us. But if we stayed left, the incline was more gradual and smooth.

Since my husband and I had dogs and this was our first time hiking the trail together, we chose the easier way without hesitation. Later, we discovered that both paths converged at the top of the mountain, leading to the same vista. No matter which way we had turned at the beginning, we would have reached the same view.

Although I made the hiking choice with confidence, my spiritual life is sometimes the opposite. In life, I face thousands of decisions, and I’m sure you do too. Some of them are minor, and others may be life altering, but each of them requires guidance and intention.

Every now and then, I encounter a major life decision where there are two choices, like the fork in the trail, and I must decide which way to turn. The problem is when both of them appear to be God-led. This happened to me several months ago when I had job opportunities at two companies, both with values I respected.

In situations like this, I often approach God’s will as though I’m taking a multiple-choice test. I think there is one correct answer, and if I don’t choose it, my life will be thrown into turmoil.

But if we look at Scripture, we rarely see God work in this way. Yes, some decisions dishonor God, and sin is always the wrong answer. But when we approach His will like a test, we forget one of the most faith-building gifts He gives us: the ability to make good decisions.

In our key verse, we see God speaking through the prophet Isaiah to the Israelites, who had wandered from Him numerous times:

“Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, ‘This is the way; walk in it’” (Isaiah 30:21).

But do you notice something? The promise doesn’t say God's people would hear from Him only if they turned to the right or only if they turned to the left. It says that in each direction, they would hear God's voice of guidance.

Sometimes we encounter decisions where multiple paths honor God. Each will grow our faith in new ways and cause us to use our God-given gifts. God wants us to seek Him in prayer and make a choice. Either way, He’ll show us the next step He wants us to take.

You may be thinking, I’ve stepped out in faith before, and it didn’t turn out well … Friend, I get it. The fear of putting ourselves out there again is real. While the outcome is not guaranteed, God does guarantee His continual presence.

After a lot of hesitation and prayer, I finally made the career decision. I looked at my family’s needs, the time required and other factors. Afterward, I felt peace. Even after a challenging first week on the job, I knew I was in my sweet spot, and confidence that could only come from God covered me. Expectant of the future, I haven't looked back.

God, thank You for the gift You give each of us in the ability to make decisions. We want to honor You in our choices, and we don’t want to remain stuck. When we encounter a fork in the road, show us the way forward. And if both paths honor You, embolden us to move forward with confidence whichever way we choose. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.


When you find yourself desperate for a break from all the noise, people and demands, where do you turn? It can be easy to look to quick fixes and distractions to numb it all out. But there are better, lasting ways to find the peace you long for. Join us for our next Online Bible Study, Rest for Your Soul: Simple Practices When You’re Worn Out and Weary, with Wendy Blight, starting September 5. Sign up today!



Abby McDonald’s book Shift: Changing Our Focus to See the Presence of God offers more insights about how a simple shift in our perspective can help us recognize our powerful God reigning in our lives. Pick up your copy today!



Are there areas of your life where you can’t seem to find a breakthrough? Visit Abby’s website to take the “5 Days to Life Unstuck” Challenge. You can also connect with Abby on Instagram.


Psalm 25:4-5, “Show me your ways, LORD, teach me your paths. Guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long” (NIV).

Do you feel stuck in a cycle of hesitancy over a decision you need to make? Could it be that God is waiting for you to take a step of faith? Share with us in the comments!

© 2023 by Abby McDonald. All rights reserved.

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