We’ve all been faced with times in our lives when it seems like everybody is happy to offer us the ‘gift’ of their opinion! But how do you tell the difference between good advice and bad advice? Here are two key questions which are always wise to consider before taking it on board:
1) What is this person’s track record?
Before taking on board a persons fine advice, you have every right to look at their track record. What has this person built in life? What have they accomplished…NOT not what have they said they’re going to accomplish…but what have they ACTUALLY accomplished? How has this kind of advice worked for them – and would you be content to become like that? Are they faithful & loyal or gossipy & backbiting? Is their outlook on life faith-filled & optimistic or negative & pessimistic? Do they show consistency in life or do they flit from one thing to another? Would you be happy for your life to emulate theirs? Remember, a person’s track record IS their statement – far more than their dazzling words. So it is completely reasonable to consider a person’s track record before taking their advice on board.
2) Will this advice bring you closer to God & His house?
This is an incredibly important question which we should always want to consider. Will this advice draw you closer to God and HIS house? Truth is, so many people neglect to take this on board before accepting ‘advice’. Does it encourage carnality or stir you to pursue God’s purpose? Is it focused on self interest or does it have an eye toward eternity? There’s nothing wrong with ambition. In fact, it’s good to be ambitious. But when fulfilling it comes at the expense of being planted and rooted in God’s house, the irony is that it always ends up becoming unfulfilling and disappointing – no-matter how ‘successful’ a person becomes. Remember this: good jobs are EASY to find. Good church communities are not. So, where will this advice lead you?
Finally, in the midst of all the advice you’re offered in life, what about seeking the guidance of the ONE who really matters? He’s described in Isaiah 9:6 as ‘Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.’ When you pray, don’t spend all your time telling God what you think. Take time to ask him what HE thinks. Listen out for the answer. This is the best advice you’ll ever hear.