Why ask? – Things to ask in times of making a decision Are you carrying an elephant?
Hi, Linda here,
There are times in our lives when we are presented with opportunities.
Some are really really good ideas
Some are really “God” ideas
What questions and steps can we take to find out the difference?
Personally I know good ideas can be great, however they have no lasting eternal impact. They are completed through “works” and the lack of Empowering Grace. Soon these things turn the “good idea” into an elephant you can see in the room, drag around, carry, try to ignore, and sometimes don’t address until you fall in a heap.
I have, in the past, dragged a few elephants around (can you get a visual of this? lol) not fun, leaves one exhausted to say the least, flattened, sat upon, tired, overwhelmed, it is not fun to carry an elephant! – Can also be very dangerous.
God ideas and plans are totally different, they come with Empowering Grace and provision to fulfil the plan and purpose. – Totally radically different, life giving, joyful experiences, though they may not be easy.
Hang in here with me…. I am getting somewhere.
I listened to a podcast yesterday called “Why ask?” It was by a gentleman called Andy Stanley, and for me it helped clarify a few things.
This is the crux of the message:- ( my take on it. can be listened to from the link below.)
When presented with an opportunity to do something, be somewhere, take something from someone etc.. ask
What is the wise thing to do?
We can be emotionally carried away at times, and jump into things without thinking, or we can over think and miss an opportunity altogether, I am guilty of both, but I ask for Wisdom as Wisdom is the Principal thing.
1. In light of my past experience what is the wise thing to do?
E.g. What has happened in the past? – was it fruitful or did it fail miserably? – Honesty is good here!
*Personally over the years many well meaning lovely people have promised to do many things for me, but in reality the majority of those things came from a “good” idea from a good heart, but in reality they never materialized. So from my past experience, I smile and say thank you that would be wonderful, and wait to see if it materializes. In light of this experience I have learned that people may mean well, but in reality don’t follow through.
( No condemnation here, just my experience.)
On the other hand I have had God use people in a powerful way to bless, encourage, minister to me and just “be there.” God works in mysterious ways. It is usually those you least expect that bless the most.
*These things work both ways. To those I have promised things that have not materialised I ask for your Forgiveness and Grace!
2 In light of my current circumstances what is the wise thing to do?
The example used in this teaching podcast was twofold:-
In light of my financial circumstances, is it wise to take this on without causing major stress etc?
If in doubt, find others around you who you trust and ask questions. let them be your sounding board. Some things take time to “nut out” – Some things need to be addressed and assessed from different angles. – In the end – Follow PEACE and Wisdom!
In light of my emotional circumstances is it wise to take this on board? – Health conditions etc, family circumstances and commitments.
Make a list if you need to. Follow your heart and your “gut” instinct. Some things can be a distraction, or a detour. – God uses circumstances and situations to cause us to stop and think.
3.Professional Decision out of a personal reality.
By this stage you should have a better clear cut idea of the “reality” of the situation.
Part of the podcast spoke about the pressure from outside sources to be or do something. This is where the rubber really hits the road. It is not kind of us to expect or ask anyone to take anything on board that we are not prepared to help with, support fully, or even do ourselves. It is the person left with the responsibility that is left “carrying the can” so as to speak. – (I can feel more elephants being loaded on to this one!)
Professional decisions need to be thought through fully, and decision made on 1. What is God telling me to do, 2. what is in my heart to do, 3 how do these things relate to my personal reality at this point in time? 4. Is it wisdom?
If your personal reality is green light – then GO FOR IT, then it will be life changing, thrilling, exciting, and God orchestrated.
If your personal reality is saying, weight, weight ,stress, and there is doubt, then lay it down and wait for the timing of God. His timing is always perfect, and does not involve elephants! His yoke is easy and his burden is light.
4. It is wise not to make decisions when angry or emotional, before making a decision, back off, cool down, ask for WISDOM and wait. Do not be pressured into making a rash decision. – This type of pressure is not from God.
God is never late, and His plan for you is to prosper you, bless you and His desire is that we would Ask seek and knock, along with wisdom from above, the right door and pathway will be open to you…. in His time.
5. In light of my future hopes and dreams what is the wise thing to do? – This relates to personal and professional things. –
What are the hopes, plans and dreams that you have in your heart? Does the present opportunity line up with these things, is it time to act, or time to wait? Does he have something better for you in light of things you may have been promised from God. Don’t despise the day of small beginnings, but be wise…. God knows. Be like Gideon if you have to be, and ask God for a “sign” He prefers us to be cautious than to rush in to things like a bull at a gate. Ask for Wisdom. God is very interested in His plan for our lives.
I hope you enjoyed this. I know I learned a lot from yesterday’s podcast. It certainly helped me put things into perspective in a few ways.
My tip from all this…. Don’t even try to carry the elephant! If you see an elephant in the room, address it, and get rid of it. It’s like the spot on the nose, you can’t help but look at it, see it, know it’s there but no one talks about it.
– Time for me to offload a few elephants I think, and pray for Wisdom!
Have a blessed day!
http://media.northpointministries.org/northpointministries/podcasts/andy_leadership/Ask-It.mp3 —- Link to podcast.
Jabez was brought forth in sorrow, but he prayed a simple prayer and God granted him what he requested. How good it would be if it were that simple.