War has rules.
Love has rules.
Nature has rules.
Life has rules.
Anytime we break these rules or get them out-of-order we risk losing that which we desire the most. Here are four questions everyone from the White House to your house need to ask before engaging in any endeavor.
#1 What is the target?
What is it that you really want? We often tip-toe around the subject. What is it you want? When I play darts I need to know the target or I will lose the throw and possibly the game. I need to know exactly what it is I want. If I need 18 point and it is to win then I need to hit the double 9 not the single 18. When I go on a car lot, I have already done my research. I know which car I want so that I do not become distracted by the flash and dance of the salespeople. Knowing your target makes all the difference.
#2 Is this the right time?
You might have heard it said that “Timing is everything.” I would agree. The Proverb tells us to work in the field first and then build the house. Because the planting and harvesting were on a timetable, timing was critical. Buying a house in a seller’s market is not you best time. Flying on Friday is not as cheap as Tuesday. Asking for vacation depends on the manager’s mood. Asking for raise in a recession is harder than in a surplus year. Life is about timing.
#3 How will I pay for it?
I went to the bank for a loan. The first question was “How do you plan to pay for this?” If we do not have a solid plan for payment then we risk losing other important items because of defaulting on the loan. My father-in-law asked the proverbial question after I asked mine, “How will you support them?” Thankfully he understood ministry and knew God would provide! Yet, the question is asked because it is important. The American people need to ask the government the same question.
#4 Do I need it?
While this question could be asked first, it is the most difficult to answer. I gave the others first because it helps to weed out many faulty options before ever getting to the emotional moments of want and need. We have been steeped in a “want” culture that has transformed flamboyant wants into everyday necessities. We are so confused over this point, but it must be addressed. Do you really need what you are proposing? Do you need that African Safari trip? Do you need the Escalade when a Santa Fe will do? Do you need a war when diplomacy would work? Do you need to focus on others or your own first? Do you need the larger house or do you need a yard sale? Do you need more games? Do you need more luxury? Do you need or do you want?
Asking these four questions aids you in avoiding that epic fail we all fear. Success is not always what you see. Asking these questions helps you gain real success found in the joy and peace of making solid decisions.
Prepare your work outside; get everything ready for yourself in the field, and after that build your house. Proverbs 24:27