Don't Go House Hunting in the Dark

Pat had scoured the multiple listing service for affordable homes in her area. She plugged in the search guidelines: three or more bedrooms, at least two bathrooms, in their price range. One home stood out among the many that popped up on her screen. Scrolling through the pictures of the house, her heart began to beat faster with excitement . Maybe this is our new home, she thought. 

Returning from a meeting later that evening, her thoughts returned to the house. She imagined how nice it would be to have more room for the kids, an extra bedroom for guests, and a safer neighborhood. Unable to wait until morning to check out the house, she turned in the direction of the home. It wouldn’t hurt just to drive by it, she thought. 

As she turned onto the street, she spotted the house immediately. Partially lit by the streetlight, the angled roof and large windows were easily recognizable from the pictures she’d seen on the web. The kids would love the big yard. And the garage would be nice on cold, rainy days. 

But a home is only as good as its neighborhood, she remembered, hearing her father’s wise words echoing in her mind. Better drive around and check it out. As she looked at the neighboring cute bungalows and spreading ranch houses, a feeling of confidence caused her to smile in the darkness. 

But she wasn’t smiling the next morning. 

Returning to the neighborhood with her husband, Pat saw what she hadn’t seen in the darkness of the night before—peeling paint, overgrown lots, and ill-kept yards. Rusting cars and broken lawn furniture cluttered the neighborhood that had once been attractive, but now had fallen into disrepair.

And her dream home? Torn screens, an outdated kitchen, and a cracked foundation that she hadn’t see in the darkness. 

Pat now had another wise adage to add to her father’s collection: Don’t go house hunting in the dark. 

You’re probably shaking your head at Pat’s foolishness, thinking that common sense should have told her it was silly to go house hunting after dark, but we are often guilty of doing something very similar—we make decisions that disregard the light of God’s Word. 

Here are some examples: 

We move to a new location without considering whether there is a good church in the area. 

We enter a partnership with an unsaved person without considering 2 Corinthians 6:14. 

We date or marry an unbeliever, ignoring the Bible's warnings about being unequally yoked. 

We seek counsel from secular psychologists and therapists who have no biblical wisdom from which to draw. 

Each of these examples is like shopping for a house in the dark. If we fail to shine the light of God’s Word into our decisions, then we are blind to God’s best for us. 

If you’re facing an important decision, I encourage you to allow the “light that shines in the darkness” to illuminate your path and guide you into God’s best plan. Here are three ways we can do this 

1. Seek God’s light through Bible reading and prayer. 
 “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path” (Psalm 119:105). 

2. Seek God’s light through the counsel of godly friends and leaders. 
“The way of a fool seems right to him, but a wise man listens to advice” (Pro. 12:15). 

3. Seek God’s light through the support of a Bible-believing church. 
“Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another. . .” (Heb. 10:25). 

If you’re wrestling with a big decision today, I encourage you to seek God. I’m comforted and empowered by James 1:5: “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God who gives to all men liberally without finding fault, and it will be given to him.” 

What about you? Have you ever gone “house hunting” in the dark only to discover later that you’d made a big mistake? Or maybe the reverse—how did seeking the light of God’s counsel save you from making a really big mistake with long-lasting consequences? Leave a comment below and share your thoughts. 


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