A woman has been asked to help with something that is worthwhile. Maybe it’s a ministry. Maybe it’s one of her kids’ activities. Maybe it’s at her job. Maybe it’s to take a job.
This woman loves God with everything in her. Her heart’s sole desire is to chase Him and do His will in her life as best she can determine it. Her heart’s cry is to reach heaven and hear Him say “well done, thou good and faithful servant.” (Sidenote: when did we decide God speaks in King James English?)
This is a great opportunity…but then she’s approached about doing something else. She knows she doesn’t have the margin or ability to do both. But both are good choices. Excellent opportunities. What is a woman to do?
So she wrestles with decision. Over and over she takes it to God. She begs Him for a sign, an indication of which way to go. Why? Because she doesn’t want to mess this up. See her heart’s desire above. So what happens? She doesn’t make a decision.
What if she realized: There are no perfect decisions.
What if she could embrace the reality that every decision will contain imperfections. Even good decision have the opportunity for life to invade. Sin to happen. Discomfort to occur.
I can’t be the only one who’s ever wrestled with this. In The Best Yes , chapters 7, 8 and, 9, Lysa explores how trapped we can get in our decisions to the point we can’t make any decision. We land in the mire of analysis paralysis. In our desperation for perfect decisions, we make no decisions. We need to realize that
Each of the choices will have just enough imperfections to make them some combination of good and not so good. Even if you are following God and He clearly directs you to make a certain decision, that choice will not be perfect.
And this fear of making decisions — this analysis paralysis — leads to an inability to trust God. When I read that…my heart stopped. If I don’t trust God with my decisions, how I can trust Him with my future? How can I move forward with confidence into God’s future, when I’m so afraid to fail that I can make a single misstep? I have to trust that He loves me, and He can take even the most imperfect decision and pull good from it.
I also have to realize there is an exchange or trade that has to occur with each decision. I only have so much time and other resources. So I have to make a trade if I’m not going to become overloaded or overstressed. Over-served even. For someone like me, this is hard. I am competent. I am able. But I still only have a limited number of hours in a week. I can work, harder, faster, smarter, but at some point I will still run out of time and other resources.
So I can be like the tree that is burdened by snow before it’s dropped its leaves. In those moments I will break, not bend. I can be like the overstuffed closet that isn’t useful because there is too much in it. Or I can trade my leaves for the snow in this season of my life. I can trade out the orange shirt for something new that I will love, too.
It’s all about trades and seasons. If you’d been in the class, you would know that’s become a mantra or theme of mine. What’s right in this season of my life? What’s right in this season of your life?
It’s not a forever decision. It’s a in this season decision.
Have you learned you have to make trades or that there aren’t perfect decisions? Were these freeing realizations or scary (or maybe both?)?