I crave clarity. It makes life simple, joyous, and 95% of decision-making easy. Someone said that we tend to find the things we search for. Whether the search is for answers or excuses, we find them.
These 3 simple actions produce the peace and joy Jesus promised. It can be ours today, but we have to search for it.
- Want what God wants, not what you want.
- Bind every decision to commitment.
- When you give something away – let go!
Problems, challenges, and setbacks are generally the fruit of wanting the wrong thing (or the right thing at the wrong time) or failing to make decisions. Our minds affirm that God offers the best and His timing is perfect, but our desires aren’t always in sync.
Human nature causes us to waffle or weigh options until they’re as moldy as whatever hides in that plastic box at the back of your refrigerator. Sometimes we put off making decisions because the perfect choice isn’t on the table. We either directly tell God what we want (and expect Him to act on it) or hope He’ll figure it out and change the game to make us happy.
It takes years, tears, and lots of God-hugs to learn that happiness isn’t found in things or experiences. Happiness is God. It’s that simple. But making decisions is hard when the way things are isn’t the way you want.
How many decisions have you made that didn’t stick? Sometimes we agonize over a choice, fail to commit, then face the same decision a second or third time. Decisions without commitment are weird forms of hope.
“I hope this works.”
Decisions make choices between one thing and another. It should be relatively easy, you select one option and discard the other. If you’re considering decisions with more than two options, you’re making it way too hard. The world would have us believe that we have to pick one thing out of 173. Not true. Every decision, regardless of how messy it looks in the beginning, is the choice between one of two things.
What Letting Go Looks Like
Which leads us to the issue of letting go. Remember playing Checkers as a kid? No move was complete until you put daylight between your fingertip and the checker. You could change your mind up till the instant you let go of the checker.
Have you “given something to Christ” yet find it there the next day, looking at you with contempt or amusement? Did you really give it away? Did you take your fingertip off, removing all other options but trust? Or did you do what most of us do, keep the slightest connection so we still have the option to change our minds or pull out the problem later as an excuse for not moving on?
Laying something at the foot of the Cross means leaving it there, alone and unwatched. We’re done. We accept whatever our Savior and Master decides to do with whatever it is. “Let go and let God” is a catchy phrase, but not practiced as often as it’s repeated. God doesn’t act until we give up control. You gotta let go of the checker.
Having Too Many Options is a Huge Problem
The biggest challenge most of us have today is too many options, not too few. From what car we should buy to what’s for dinner, the options are endless.
- Where should I volunteer?
- What exercise plan is best?
- Where should we worship?
- Which friend should I ask to lunch next week?
- What book should I read?
- What should I wear?
- How can I help?
- Which ministry should I support?
- Which invitation should I accept?
- What wrinkle cream should I buy?
- What should I do for my husband’s birthday?
- Where can I cut back?
- Which chore should I get done today?
When we can’t complete projects we tend to never begin. Choosing from a mind-numbing list of options is precisely that – intentionally mind numbing. Satan uses complexity to keep us from being, doing, and serving. If all you had to do was choose A or B, you’d rack up victories on a daily basis.
But that’s not how the world works. Multi-tasking has become the norm. Being slaves to whatever ringtone signals the latest text or Facebook post splinters our days into moments of distraction. Simplicity becomes an intellectual concept, not a way of life.
That’s not God’s plan. That’s not the gospel. In fact, Jesus says that we must become as little children to enter the kingdom of heaven. That means simple. Honest. Direct.
Purpose to want what God wants. If you’re not sure what that is, don’t feel like the lone stranger. That’s how the world wants it. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Seek simplicity.
Make decisions and bind them with commitment.
Learn to let go. Take your finger off the checker and let God do His thing. He’ll always make the right choice.
Not sure how to do create simplicity from complexity? Maybe I can help. I’m only an email away.