Green Light, Yellow Light, Red Light

Last week my husband and I had to make a major decision about something that was plopped in our laps at the last minute. I am not a last-minute person. I have to pray and have a sense of peace. Discomfort about a decision gets the best of me because I’m unable to sleep.  It’s as though God is saying, Wake up, I’ll help you work this through. I don’t sleep, so neither shall you.

As a couple, we sometimes use a decision making process similar to a stoplight. We don’t move forward unless we both feel we can go through the green light together. If one of us feels like a yellow, we proceed with caution before a final decision gets made. If one of us feels like a red, then things come to a screeching stop.

Yellow Light

While driving home, I expressed my discomfort to my husband. I said, “I need to pray this through tonight or tomorrow morning, then I’ll be alright.” He listened, said it was okay, and understood. As we tucked ourselves into bed, I gave him a bunch of kisses. He paused for a moment and said, “Just so you know, I was thinking the same thing. We need to pray this through.”

Sleep was intermittent that night. I tried sleeping for awhile, even though I tossed and turned like a pair of tennis shoes in my clothes dryer. I finally came to my desk, wrote out my thoughts and prayers, and asked God for nuggets of wisdom. If this is good, give me peace. If it’s not, then keep my heart restless.

At 3:30 a.m., I was still feeling as though a yellow light was flashing in front of me (proceed with caution), and I could no longer keep my eyes open. I needed sleep and hoped the morning would bring a fresh perspective. As I crawled into bed, my husband was processing his decision in his sleep. It seems as though he rides his bicycle through an obstacle course with legs moving and arms flailing, bracing for a fall. I was close to deep sleep when he unintentionally smacked my hand. He swears he does this while dreaming.

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Green Light

Exhausted, I dragged myself out of bed at 7 a.m., and prayed some more at my desk. Finally, I felt I had a green light in front of me. I was no longer restless. I knew I could live with this decision, and God was a part of it. We wouldn’t be moving ahead blindly. My husband walked into the office, asked how I was feeling about things, and announced he had a sense of peace too.  Green light.

He made a phone call.

We made it through another major decision–together.

Copyright © 2017 Sheri Mueller, Growthtrac Ministries

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About Sheri Mueller

bio-sheri-mueller Sheri Mueller is an LPC who earned her M.A. in Professional Counseling from Olivet Nazarene University. A certified facilitator and trainer for PREPARE/ENRICH, the most widely used customized couple assessment tool, Sheri has worked for more than 15 years to help individuals, premarital couples, and married couples build and maintain healthy relationships. An author of numerous articles and a regular column, Mentor Minute, Sheri, with her husband, Jim, founded Growthtrac Ministries. See Sheri's Mentor Minutes

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