Making decisions about life is a difficult process. On Canadian thanksgiving I was notified that the company was closing down our office and they were hoping that I and my wife would move to Huntsville, Alabama. The offer they were making was compelling and forced us to have to make a big decision. Would we move to Huntsville or not?
At first we thought we would move. We knew it would be hard but it was the only option that gave me a guaranteed job. However, as time went on and we analyzed our decision making process, we realized that the only reason we were considering moving was because of the career implications. That is not necessarily a bad reason but is it the right reason?
This kind of decision needs to take into account all of life not just one aspect. The important things in life are often long term in their consequences and benefits. A wedding happens in a day but a marriage lasts until death. Children are conceived in a moment but they live a lifetime. In both of these cases it is important to analyze the cost because they each come with their difficulties. Marriages need to be worked at and children need to be disciplined. If we only consider the short term consequences of these types of decisions we may never make them because it is really the long term benefits that make it worthwhile.
Here are some are some other thoughts that helped us maintain perspective:
- Grandparents do not talk about their careers they show you pictures of their grandchildren.
- You can always make new friends but it is hard to build the same trust that you have with friends you grew up with. [I suspect this is because you use the same language to communicate and therefore there are not as many misunderstandings.]
- Communities raise children not just parents. Who do you want influencing your kids?
- Money does not make you happy, it makes you want more.
- Relationships are more important than careers.
However, these are not the ultimate considerations for a Christian although they can help shape the outcome. Christians need to determine if God is calling them to go and serve Him in a different place. Because of life's circumstances we knew that we were not being called by God but we were being tested by Him. This was not so much a decision about a career but a decision about whether we would put our trust in God for our future or my ability to provide a living. After this realization the decision was easy because God says that you cannot serve both Him and money (Matt. 6:8).