• Pete Johnson
Two trails splitting around a group of trees

This past Saturday the world of college athletics was shocked to hear the tragic news regarding the murder of a young woman in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, the home of the University of Alabama. The young woman who lost her life was a 23-year-old, single mother, Jamea Harris. Jamea Harris was not a college athlete however, but the misfortunate circumstances that brought her life to an end were directly related to a young man who was a member of the fourth-ranked Crimson Tide men’s basketball program.

Darius Miles, 21, a Junior basketball player for the University of Alabama’s men’s basketball team, along with another young man was charged with the capital murder of Jamea Harris this past Sunday, January 15th.  The heartbreaking tragedy occurred around 1 am Sunday morning when an altercation broke out between Miles and his friend and the individuals in the vehicle that Jamea was in. Shots were fired into the vehicle hitting and killing Jamea. News sources have confirmed that Darius Miles gave the gun to his friend who pulled the trigger.

Not to diminish the weightiness of this horrific act, but as this case goes further, it will reveal, as most fatal incidents do, the lack of God-centered decision making.

Decision making is a vital skill in anything you do in life. Decisions that we make impact our lives more than any other life variable.

Non-believers, as well as believers, can fall prey to making decisions that run contra to godly behavior.

A couple of examples from God’s Word quickly come to mind.

Abraham, when there was a famine in the land, traveled down to Egypt, without consultation or direction from God.  His decision did provide his family with food and wealth, yet not without a cost. His wife was taken into the King’s harem, his nephew Lot was directly impacted by this decision, and when he left the land of Egypt, not only did he carry away great riches, he carried out with him the Egyptian handmaiden, Hagar. (Genesis 12:10–13:13)

Perhaps a more familiar story is that of David and Bathsheba. David’s decisions resulted in adultery, a child out of wedlock who dies, and the premeditated murder of Uriah the Hittite. (2 Samuel 11–12)

You may say, “I don’t think I will make any decisions like that!” But what kind of decisions are you making, and is God at the center of those decisions, or are you at the center of them?

 As Christians, we are constantly making decisions.

The decision to react Christlike or unChrist.

The decision to be kind or unkind.

The decision to gossip or keep our mouths closed.

The decision to complain about things or be content.

The decisions to forgive or hold grudges.

The list goes on!

We must transform our minds to understand that the decisions we make today will be part of our future.

So how can I change the way I make decisions, so that God, not Me, is the center of my decision making?

Proverbs 3:5-8

“Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths. Be not wise in your own eyes; fear the LORD, and turn away from evil. It will be healing to your flesh and refreshment to your bones.”

“ Good and evil both increase at compound interest. That is why the little decisions you and I make every day are of such infinite importance.” – C.S. Lewis