Decisions, Decisions

We are a generation that hates to make decisions. We even have apps to help us make our decisions; where to eat, who to follow, and what music to like. When it comes right down to it, we don’t like to decide between this and that because we are convinced that we can have both. Like the child in Subway, we want the chips and the cookies and if we don’t get them both, you better watch out! Or like the one who calls herself a Christian, we want the blessings of God and the pleasures of this world and why shouldn’t we be able to have both?

Rev. Art Hodges tweeted last week, “Worship is exclusive. YOU must make a choice!” Elijah said the same thing a few thousand years ago, “How much longer will you waver, hobbling between two opinions? If the Lord is God, follow him! But if Baal is God, then follow him!”

Photo by katietower

You must decide!

The word decision stems from the Latin word decidere, which means “to cut off.” Decisions don’t carry the same weight as they used to. Our culture treats decisions like test-runs. Two people ‘decide’ to marry but give up when life isn’t a fairytale anymore. A young person ‘decides’ to volunteer in a soup kitchen but quits after a few months when he realizes that his friends are out enjoying themselves while he serves up dinner to the same weary faces. Decisions just don’t carry the permanence which their name suggests.

One of my favorite poems is Robert Frost’s The Road Not Taken. If you are familiar with the poem, the line that sticks out in your head is probably

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I –
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

And while the theme of taking the less traveled road is dominant in this poem, it is not the major theme. Mr. Frost was describing the difficult decisions that we all must make and he conveyed that when the decision is made, we will never return to try the other option.

“Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.”

The title of the poem makes this abundantly clear. He did not title the poem The Road Less Traveled By as it is often mistakenly called. He titled the poem The Road Not Taken. It was the choice that he cut off. He made a decision.

We must also decide.

As for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.

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Just Do Something: A Book Review

I recently read Just Do Something by Kevin DeYoung, author of Why We’re Not Emergent. I had to laugh at the subtitle to the book; How to Make a Decision Without Dreams, Visions, Fleeces, Open Doors, Random Bible Verses, Casting Lots, Liver Shivers, Writing in the Sky, etc. As you have probably already guessed, the book is about making decisions and ‘discovering’ the will of God for your life.

DeYoung points out that we tend to have three different meanings of ‘the will of God.’

  1. God’s will of decree. God’s will is always going to be done because He decrees it.
  2. God’s will of desire. God gave humanity a choice. It is His desire that we choose to obey the Word of God.
  3. God’s will of direction. Which, according to DeYoung, is mostly bunk (especially in terms of how we often use it.)

He makes the point that if we would have faith in God’s will of decree and obey God’s will of desire, then God’s will of direction will be taken care of.

God’s will for your life is already spelled out pretty plain in Scripture; it is God’s will for you to be sanctified, it is God’s will for you to go, teach, and baptize, and the list goes on. It is all there in the Word of God.

So what’s the problem? The problem is, we want answers about who to marry, what job to take, where to live, what college to go to, and this list goes on. In waiting to ‘find God’s will’ we delay making any choices and often believe that we are more spiritual when we are actually being indecisive.

What should we do? Have faith in God’s will of decree and obey God’s will of desire. Do those to things and then pray for wisdom and make choices about all the other stuff.

What are your thoughts on DeYoung’s thoughts concerning God’s will? I am still trying to sort it all out but I certainly think there is a lot of truth to what he has said.

Chick-fil-A Leadercast: Part 1

I had the awesome opportunity to take part in the Chik-fil-a Leadercast Conference 2010 this past Friday.  This ten-year-old conference is all about “developing leaders at all levels, positions, and stages.”  This year was my first opportunity to be a part of this great event but I do hope that  it is not my last.  Over the next couple of weeks, I want to share some of the “takeaways” for me on this blog.  I hope that something that challenged me at Leadercast 2010 will challenge you as well.

Speaker #1: Connie Podesta – Expert in the psychology of human behavior and leadership development.

Ms. Podesta challenged us to ask ourselves two questions; (1) Are you proud of the professional choices that you are making right now? (2) Are you proud of the personal choices that you are making right now?

She went on to make the case that there is no separating the personal life from the professional life.  The choices that we make in our personal life have a great impact on our professional life.  As a matter of fact, the choices that you make from the time you “clock out” until the time that you “clock back in” may have more to do with your success than the time that you are “on the clock.”

I was so glad to hear her talk about the importance of being the same person in the workplace that you are in your personal life.  This is something we all struggle with (if we will be honest).  We live in the age of political correctness.  PC gags and handcuffs the Christian in the workplace.  This should not be!  We will never be proud of both our professional and personal choices if they are not guided by the same truths, values, and principles.

Other Takeaways:

Stop trying to make people happy.  There is not a person in  your life that you can make happy!!!  (They need Jesus for that.)

Happiness will come when we (1) are respectful (2) work hard and (3) serve others. 

Happiness is result of doing right things, making right choices, and serving others!

Character is revealed when what you had planned is so far from your current reality that you can hardly breath, this is when you are revealed for who you truly are at the core.