Aaron Summers

Posts Tagged ‘decisions’

5 Decisions to Finish Strong

In Transition on October 8, 2015 at 7:51 am

Finish Strong

At 45, I am beginning to have thoughts of what it will take to finish strong.  Sitting in the middle of life, I want to be able to approach retirement and grand-parenting with no regrets.  How can I make the most of my choices now so that I can finish strong?  Someone once said, “One thing about getting old is that you can sing in the bathroom while brushing your teeth.”  I want to believe God has more for us to do!  Let’s look at Psalm 71 and see 5 crucial decisions if we are going to finish strong.

5 Decisions

Some say David penned Psalm 71 when he fled from his son Absalom. If this is the correct chronological context of this psalm, then David would have been about 62 years old when he wrote this portion of scripture. And throughout the psalm, it becomes clear that he is writing from the perspective of old age. For example, in verse 9, he says, “in my old age, don’t set me aside.” Then in verse 18, he says, “Now that I am old and gray do not abandon me, O God.”

Decision #1 Make your refuge in God – When life gets hard where do you go?  Where do you find your comfort?  I will admit today that I have 2 things I do when I get super stressed.  I eat and I play football on XBOX.  These two things allow me to just get away from things.  I am not saying either are the healthiest things to do, but that is what happens.  Why don’t we turn to scripture?  Why don’t we turn to prayer?  Often, the reason we are stressed out is because we over-stretch our abilities and time.  We become exhausted.  Escapism is real.  The problem is in what we choose to escape.  Making our refuge in God will set the tone to finish strong!

Decision #2 Make your requests to God – The Psalmist asks God to fill him with praise and with presence.  We look around some days and find it hard to praise.  From Oregon to Ferguson to Florida it is hard to praise God. The number of mass shootings this year alone is staggering.  God is not dead.  God is not unaware.  God has not forgotten us.  We have walked away.  We have neglected.  We have abandoned.  For those who faith remains we must balance the pressure with praise of the Most High.  Ask God to fill you with praise.  Ask God to fill you with His presence.

Decision #3 Find your resolve in God – Choosing to have a mood that reflects God’s presence is important.  The attitude you have is the one who chose to have.  Surrounding circumstances and people can affect your demeanor, but the attitude you reveal is your responsibility.  Find your resolve in God to give you peace and joy in pain and tragedy.  Resolve to live in God’s peace.  Resolve to act on what you know of God and what you have experienced through salvation.  Nothing else can compare to God.

Decision #4 Often reflect on God – Looking back on life with an eye for God’s hand lift your spirit and strengthens you for the finish line sprint.  As I reflect on life I see how God has worked to get me where I am with the abilities I have.  In the midst of those difficulties you can’t see clearly.  The fog of frustration blinds you to the reality.  The life God gave and the labor God gives you today sustains you through each moment.  Reflect on the movements of God more than the moments you felt anger.

Decision #5 Rejoice because of God – The Psalmist ends with rejoicing in God.  He chooses to because he understands the restoration and redemption he found in God.  Choosing to rejoice keeps our spiritual life above the fray.  We still face pain.  We still face pills and doctors.  We still face grief.  However, choosing to rejoice in what you can balances your life.

2 Lessons Learned

  1.  I will retire someday from a position, but I will never retire from my passion in Jesus.
  2.  When I retire I will choose to refire in new ways for God.

 

What choices are you making today to finish strong?

 

Don’t Leave Your Chad Hanging

In Life and Culture on November 4, 2014 at 8:30 am

I know way too many people who make decisions using Rock Paper Scissors.  This is “old school” because I am choosing not to include Spock or Bomb.

  • Who chooses where we eat?
  • Who gets the car?
  • Who gets the girl?
  • Which way should we go?
  • Who goes first?
  • Who gets the good office?
  • Who gets the budget dollars?

These are simple decisions that don’t really matter.  However as we move up the decision-making food chain we shouldn’t rely on this hand game to choose our destiny.  Can you imagine Luke and Vader settling the Force issue this way?  What if the Hunger Games solved its problem like this? It seems that most decisions on Big Bang Theory are settled in this fashion!  Instead of all this election night coverage that messes up the television recording schedule, what if the candidates simply played Rock Paper Scissors Best of 5?

Silly?  Borderline stupid?  How are we supposed to make decisions then? Our vote sets the direction of our country for the next 4-8 years and beyond depending on lasting effects.  Surely there is a better way to decide.  Don’t worry.  There is a better way.

There are three basic influences that shape our decisions: Facts, Feelings, and Faith.  These three are like the points of a triangle.  The answer to your dilemma/decision is found at the center where God’s peace resides.  Geometry teaches us the way to find the center of a triangle is like this picture:

FACTS

FEELINGS                                                                             FAITH

From each point one would draw a line to the center of the opposing line.  Where these meet is the center of the triangle.  Every decision, large and small, involves this triangle.  Our job, should we want peace and a life with no regrets, should be to find the center and choose wisely.  Here is how it would work.

FACTS

What are the facts about your decision?  What are the pro’s and con’s?  Make a T-Chart and list on the reasons to choose one way or the other.  Do your research.  Google stalk this decision.  Find out everything you can that is factual.  There are no feelings at this point.  Do not formulate any thoughts yet.  Just gather data.

FEELINGS

Does either way cause joy or pain?  How would deciding either way affect your relationships, your family, your friends?  Those who find the facts easy will find this difficult and the emotional will find the factual harder.

FAITH

Dive into scripture and discover what the Bible has to say about this decision.  I suggest to you that the wisdom of Scripture applies to all of our decisions if we will take the time to investigate.  You may not be a Bible scholar or Logos 4 owner.  Find a biblically wise person in your church or take your pastor to lunch and pick his brain.  Pray for God to bring clarity and direction.  Pray for faith.  Pray for strength.  Pray.

The point is that we should find a balance just like in geometry to find the center of God’s Will in whatever matter you have.  If we lean too heavily on one point the choice could be skewed.  If we take only one point into consideration we are not being responsible.  If we take 2 of 3 we are not being balanced.  The answers you need, and want, can be found.  The decisions made without regret are available to those who do the work.  I don’t always make good decisions, but when I do I use the Decision Triangle.  Try it with your big decision today.

4 Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! 5 Let your graciousness be known to everyone. The Lord is near. 6 Don’t worry about anything, but in everything, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God. 7 And the peace of God, which surpasses every thought, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.

 

4 Must Includes for Your Next Meeting

In Leadership on August 19, 2014 at 8:43 am

meetings

Have you ever left a meeting and wondered what just happened? Have you ever left a meeting needing to check your blood pressure? Have you ever found yourself texting, checking email, or playing Words with Friends during the meeting? Maybe you began posting rants about the meeting on Facebook or Twitter. If you are really sneaky you might have taken pics and posted them too.

I call these Killer Meetings. We get so bored or frustrated because we do not feel anything is being accomplished. We all have so much to do that we only have a certain amount of time. We don’t want our time wasted unless it was our choice. A new form of meeting that is emerging is called the Email Meeting. I appreciate what is being attempted and sometimes it works best with busy schedules. However, there is a creative confluence that happens when we get together that is missed in email. I read in Proverbs the other day that toil brings profit and talking brings poverty. Let’s apply that to the meetings we lead or attend. Here are 4 must-includes for your next meeting.

1. Movement. The best way to keep a meeting moving is to have a definite finish moment. This reminds me of counseling sessions that have a timer. You have seen movies and shows that portray the couple in the middle of an emotional moment when the alarm sounds. The counselor interrupts and tells them the session is over and calendars the next session. The point is to keep the couple focused and working hard. Starting and ending on time may feel awkward but creates a respect for the time provided. Reminding people that another meeting will be scheduled if the agenda is not accomplished tends to drive home the need for focus and good flow of information and ideas.  There are times when another meeting is required and some information should not be rushed.  However, many decisions are neglected because we did not move through the discussion in an appropriate fashion.

2. Management. People have a tendency to get off task. Discussions and conversations ensue on a variety of topics. Countless meetings have gone on for hours only to leave everyone worn out and wondering what happened. Many leaders and committee heads have started printing agendas and passing them out. The problem is they are not always used. The leader must keep the group on task. One way to accomplish this is to send out the agenda before the meeting. This way everyone knows what to expect and can formulate their thoughts that aid in movement.  When the group begins to stray the leader needs to guide them back to the topic at hand.  Managing a meeting requires a focus and attention to the task at hand.  If the leader simply lets the conversation prattle on indefinitely then hours pass and no decision is made.

3. Making Decisions. I am constantly battling this issue. Often I sit through meetings where there has been grand discussion without any decisions. An agenda that does not drive toward a decision is not useful. Meetings that stay on time and are managed well but do not make decisions leaves the people tired and possibly deciding it was not worth it. I have seen groups dwindle because nothing is happening. A skilled group leader will design the agenda that demands a decision before the end. Certainly we are to discuss. However, some people like to talk about something without conclusions. These types will kill a meeting, a ministry, or any group. They can hijack the group and drive to derision and not decisions. I am not saying that rash decisions should be made with discussion and debate. Excessive talk and off-topic discussion must be squelched in order for the greater good of the group to be experienced.

4. Maintenance. When the alarm sounds, so to speak, the clean up begins. Have all the items been completed? Is another meeting needed? After the meeting the leader or secretary sends a report to the group reminding them what happened. Also, a report needs to be sent up the leadership ladder for accountability. Without this work, we all forget what happened. The decisions made at this meeting might affect other groups in the organization. If these are not shared there could be overlapping resource needs which leads to difficulties.

Adjusting from killer meetings to meetings that kill it takes courage and consistency.  This change does not happen in the first meeting of a group that has a history of babbling without anything beneficial.  Allow for some flexibility and over time your group will start killing it!

 In all toil there is profit, but mere talk tends only to poverty. (Proverbs 14:23 ESV)

Why You Must Fact Check Personal Decisions

In Decisions on July 17, 2014 at 9:45 am

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President Obama recently stated that the GOP has blocked every serious idea about building up middle class America.  The Washington Post had this to say in response.  It seems that we, in America, are yet again at a standstill when it comes to getting anything accomplished in Congress.  The fact-checker of the Washington Post gave Obama 3 Pinocchios for that claim.  Much more can be found on their fact checker site.   What comes to mind for me, is that, while I don’t swallow in whole anything either side ever says about the other, it is interesting to note that someone is fact-checking the situation.

We do this at home too, right?  I have two children: a boy and a girl.  The rhetoric that ensues at times is comical, albeit very frustrating in the heat of the moment.  Usually there are lavish claims being shot back and forth much like Congress.  Each climbs onto their platform and tries to hijack the conversation.  Often we must fact-check the situation and try to understand exactly what happened, when, and to whom.

While we certainly understand the need for fact-checking in politics and parenting, we often forgo the attempt when it comes to personal decisions.  Whether it is because of lack of energy or inflated view of self-knowledge, we often make decisions, of a personal nature, off-the-cuff.  Why?  Why are we so enthralled in making sure the leadership of a country are absolute and that our family is too, but choose to live in a relative state personally?  In reality, our frustrated lives, battered pride, stress, and anxiety might all stem from a lack of personal fact-checking before making decisions.  As followers of Christ, why are we not engaging in a conversation with God before making certain decisions?

But when the people of Gibeon heard what Joshua had done to Jericho and Ai, they resorted to deception to save themselves. They sent ambassadors to Joshua, loading their donkeys with weathered saddlebags and old, patched wineskins.  So the Israelites examined their food, but they did not consult the Lord.  Then Joshua made a peace treaty with them and guaranteed their safety, and the leaders of the community ratified their agreement with a binding oath.    Joshua 9

We get into difficult situations often on our own.  Let us learn to engage the Lord in order to not live in regret.  Fact-check your decisions and you will soon shed the robes of regret that are so heavy.

Ratting Out Jesus

In Decisions, Life and Culture on January 10, 2014 at 9:44 am

tattle-tale

The worst possible thing to ever be is a snitch, it seems, depending on who you talk to about the subject.  If you are the one doing wrong then whoever tells on you is the most wretched of creatures.  If you are the one in charge needing to find the culprit then whoever provides reliable information is rewarded.  So, if you are in the know about something you have a choice to make.  To whom will you be loyal?

The people of 1st century Israel were put into a perplexing situation.  Jesus had just raised Lazarus from the dead…no really.  Check it out here.  The rulers of the time were not happy because they felt they were losing their grip on the people.  So here is what they said:

Meanwhile, the leading priests and Pharisees had publicly ordered that anyone seeing Jesus must report it immediately so they could arrest him.

In other words, the people were being forced to choose. To whom would they be loyal.  Unfortunately, one of those closest to Jesus is the one who turned Him in to the religious authorities.  Turning in Jesus.  Who would do such a thing?  You and me.  Each time we have a moral/ethical decision to make we either revere or rebel.  We either choose Jesus or turn Him in.  Our cultural jury is watching and listening carefully in order to render a verdict.  Will you stand guilty before them or before God?  Sounds awful right?  We choose God in our heads, but often man in our hearts and hands. What do we do when we must choose loyalties?  How do we go about choosing?  Here are few thoughts.

Who do you respect more?  Essentially, it is not about revere and rebel, though it makes for a great question!  It comes down to respect.  Do you respect your peers more than God?  Do you respect the common man more than God?  Who, when looking at the larger picture, garners more respect?  Often we choose the one we respect more?  Take a look at your history.  Who have you chosen?

Think long-term.  We often choose based on short-term.  We want people to like us now.  We want benefits now.  We want prestige now.  We want chances now.  When we choose based on short-term we get short-term results.  Public opinion is like fashion…trendy.  When you choose to adhere to the court of public opinion you will never find joy.  Just about the time you settle in it changes.  What kind of person do you want to be known as later?  Start today.

Study the matter.  Impulse decisions will wreck your life!  You drank too much and crashed your car.  You had to have that new _______.  Now you’re in debt beyond your ability to pay.   Take time to study the matter.  In encourage you to go old school:  pros/cons and scripture.  Engaging your logic and your faith makes for  a better decision.

Choosing wisely is a result of a careful and thoughtful process.  We are faced with decisions of loyalty everyday.  With each one you are either standing with, or serving up, Jesus.  Which will you be doing today?

Treasure Map

In Chrisian Life, Direction, Journey on July 22, 2013 at 7:03 am

york-pirate-treasure-map-brown-wallpaper-2

I was handed a note the other day that had on it a number and a statement.  It appeared that this one the first of several clues to some “hidden treasure”.  Being taken by the hand, I was led outside to find the next clue.  I walked around the entire front and back yards searching for clues that led to other clues.  I thought Nicolas Cage couldn’t be far away!  Clue after clue came and went and 30 minutes later I found the last clue and treasure.  Had I chosen to ignore I would have missed the joy of the treasure in the end.  I knew the kids had worked hard putting it all together.  Even though I didn’t really want to go through the process, I did it anyway.  I tried to “cheat” the system and think ahead to see if I could skip clues and get to the treasure.  Isn’t that how we are with God and His wisdom?

if you seek it like silver and search for it like hidden treasure,
then you will understand the • fear of the Lord and discover the knowledge of God.
For the Lord gives wisdom; from His mouth come knowledge and understanding.

Proverbs 2:4-6

Sometimes I don’t like to do the work.  The Bible says that if we seek it then we will find the knowledge of God.  That knowledge provides the answers to the questions you  have.  However, if we never seek for it how can it be found?  If I don’t do the work, then I don’t get the reward.

Sometimes I try to cheat the system.  I know many who try to do this.  Some just go to church while others do not do that much.  Some simply say they believe and post nice trite sayings and images on social media.  Some read in order to stay up with the church folks.  However, when the storms rise on the seas of life, we feel lost, alone, and scared.  Trying to cheat the system does not give us the wisdom and knowledge we need to navigate through the narrow passes and heavy seas.

When I go through the motions I miss the joy.  One time my kids gave me a map and I just ran through it trying to be done.  I missed the joy of the journey with them.  We do this with God also.  We try to rush through Bible reading, give a 2 second prayer at dinner, and hardly pause from social media in church to hear what is going on.  We stay up to late on Saturday’s and run late or skip on Sundays.  We sit there half asleep and wishing we were somewhere else.  We go through the motions and wonder why we do not know how to handle situations we face.  Without God’s wisdom and knowledge we are filled with fear and anxiety.  We deal with regrets because we failed to make the right choices at the right time for the right reasons.

Settle in and enjoy the process.  This is by far the most rewarding.  Look at what God says for those who settle in and work the map.

Then you will understand righteousness, justice, and integrity
—every good path. 10 For wisdom will enter your mind, and knowledge will delight your heart.
11 Discretion will watch over you, and understanding will guard you, 12 rescuing you from the way of evil—

Trivial Pursuit

In Chrisian Life, Commitment, Decisions, Uncategorized on July 16, 2013 at 11:39 pm

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Pursuit.

Over the years, I have pursued many things. Haven’t you?

  • As a child I pursued longer skids on my bike and how long I could hold my breath.
  • As I got a little older I pursued Jenny down the street.
  • As a youth, I sought friends in whatever way it took. I pursued girls relentlessly. I worked to earn money to spend on those pursuits.
  • In college, I pursued grades and girls and money for the latter.

Later I pursued God and it helped me put everything into perspective! I had placed faith in Jesus at 8 but had not developed that relationship. For that reason, I had many trivial pursuits. Bike skids left scars on my knees. Girls brought drama. Seeking friends at all costs really costs you more than you can pay. Grades were good but did not satisfy and money came and went. However, God made all the difference.

On this pursuit of God I ran across a verse I had not noticed before.

So then let us pursue what makes for peace and for mutual upbuilding. (Romans 14:19 ESV)

In the midst of our many and various issues and differences God wants us to pursue peace. Jesus would preach that the peacemaker was blessed. Either way, we are to be active in the pursuit of peace. Do not be mistaken. Pursing peace is not about tolerance of immoral and unbiblical behaviors as our culture presents. Paul is writing to the church. Those who are followers of Jesus are to pursue peace among ourselves. The ramifications of chaos in the church body is irrelevance in the community.

We are to also pursue the development of each other. We are to help one another deepen our relationship with God and increase our love for humanity. Sound familiar? Jesus said those two things were the two greatest commandments. It is no wonder Paul writes that we are to help one another do that better.

Don’t waste your life pursuing what cannot satisfy. Pursue God.

Party Cloudy with a Chance of Grace

In Decisions on April 23, 2013 at 1:58 pm

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My kids had ball practice yesterday and it was 75 degrees and sunny. We have prayed for the season to start.  The evenings of ball games and sunflower seeds are quickly approaching and I love this time of year.  Coming out of the winter slump, the ability to stretch our legs and throw a ball is enjoyed by many.

Today it is 37 degrees and raining.  We have been in a drought…a severe drought.  Churches all over the state have prayed for rain.  The last couple of weeks have provided much-needed moisture but with a freeze warning now in place it is just crazy!  Spring started a month ago!

What’s the problem?  We have prayed for two things to happen.  We just didn’t want them to happen at the same time!  How often does that happen to you?  You have prayed for two things that really do not coexist well and God grants both? God challenges us sometimes with choices.  The wants and needs of our lives can counteract one another.  You pray for more money and a better relationship with your family.  Now a job offer comes but it is out-of-town or travels a lot.  You have prayed for your marriage to strengthen and for your business to flourish.  You have been praying about a relationship and college.  You get answers to both but they are not in same state?  You pray about personal holiness and a job promotion.  The money is awesome but comes with ethical strings.  What happens if you must choose one?  How will you choose?

How do we choose between wants and needs?  How often do we simply try to have it all?  Just like we can’t have rain and baseball together you cannot have your cake and eat it also.  There are choices we must make everyday.  God promises us our needs will be met, not our wants.  It is on us to choose carefully at times what to praise God for what to be frustrated with God for in our prayers.  Here is what you do:

  • Take a breath.
  • Review what is important.
  • Read scripture.
  • Ask God.
  • Choose the need to praise God for today.
  • Ask for grace about the want.

You never know, the sun may break through just in time and God allows both.  You’ll never know until we humble ourselves in the sight of God. Life may be partly cloudy but there is always a chance for grace!

***

Humble yourselves before the Lord and he will exalt you.  James 4:10

***

Decisions, Decisions

In Decisions, Leadership on November 5, 2012 at 11:05 am

I know way to many people who make decisions using Rock Paper Scissors.  This is “old school” because I am choosing not to include Spock or Bomb.

  • Who chooses where we eat?
  • Who gets the car?
  • Who gets the girl?
  • Which way should we go?
  • Who goes first?
  • Who gets the good office?
  • Who gets the budget dollars?

These are simple decisions that don’t really matter.  However as we move up the decision-making food chain we shouldn’t rely on this hand game to choose our destiny.  Can you imagine Luke and Vader settling the Force issue this way?  What if the Hunger Games solved its problem like this? It seems that most decisions on Big Bang Theory are settled in this fashion!  Instead of all this electoral college and election night coverage that messes up the television recording schedule, what if the candidates simply played Rock Paper Scissors Best of 5?

Silly?  Borderline stupid?  How are we supposed to make decisions then? Our vote sets the direction of our country for the next 4-8 years and beyond depending on lasting effects.  Surely there is a better way to decide.  Don’t worry.  There is a better way.

There are three basic influences that shape our decisions: Facts, Feelings, and Faith.  These three are like the points of a triangle.  The answer to your dilemma/decision is found at the center where God’s peace resides.  Geometry teaches us the way to find the center of a triangle is like this picture:

FACTS

FEELINGS                                                                             FAITH

From each point one would draw a line to the center of the opposing line.  Where these meet is the center of the triangle.  Every decision, large and small, involves this triangle.  Our job, should we want peace and a life with no regrets, should be to find the center and choose wisely.  Here is how it would work.

FACTS – What are the facts about your decision?  What are the pro’s and con’s?  Make a T-Chart and list on the reasons to choose one way or the other.  Do your research.  Google stalk this decision.  Find out everything you can that is factual.  There are no feelings at this point.  Do not formulate any thoughts yet.  Just gather data.

FEELINGS – Does either way cause joy or pain?  How would deciding either way affect your relationships, your family, your friends?  Those who find the facts easy will find this difficult and the emotional will find the factual harder.

FAITH – Dive into scripture and discover what the Bible has to say about this decision.  I suggest to you that the wisdom of Scripture applies to all of our decisions if we will take the time to investigate.  You may not be a Bible scholar or Logos 4 owner.  Find a biblically wise person in your church or take your pastor to lunch and pick his brain.  Pray for God to bring clarity and direction.  Pray for faith.  Pray for strength.  Pray.

The point is that we should find a balance just like in geometry to find the center of God’s Will in whatever matter you have.  If we lean too heavily on one point the choice could be skewed.  If we take only one point into consideration we are not being responsible.  If we take 2 of 3 we are not being balanced.  The answers you need, and want, can be found.  The decisions made without regret are available to those who do the work.  I don’t always make good decisions, but when I do I use the Decision Triangle.  Try it with your big decision today.

4 Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! 5 Let your graciousness be known to everyone. The Lord is near. 6 Don’t worry about anything, but in everything, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God. 7 And the peace of God, which surpasses every thought, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.

 

Backfired!

In Church, Decisions, Direction, Faithfulness, Jesus, Leadership, Uncategorized on October 1, 2012 at 7:33 am

The men met in a back room one evening after everyone had left.  They were discussing the future of the head coach.  The years since he had arrived had been difficult.  Everyone expected growth and development of the program.  Instead, they struggled to even maintain what they had.  Some were frustrated, others disappointed, and felt it was time for a change.  When the coach arrived the excitement was hard to contain.  After the first couple of years, the dreams began to fade.  Instead of pulling together, the people and support were pulling apart.  When there was no winning season, the demand for leadership change grew.  On this night decisions were being forged that would change the state of the program and the coach.  Those involved in the meeting were determined to see a change in leadership, but they didn’t know God was preparing to do something wonderful. (Facing the Giants)

This plan backfired.

In Matthew 26, Jesus was not performing in the way some expected the Messiah to perform.  The expectations had been fantastic.  The Messiah had arrived.  He would make the Romans exit the country and reestablish Israel as a world power.  He would dominate the political and military arenas.  The excitement was contagious.  However, Jesus came with a different plan.  He came to establish a spiritual dominance more than a political or militaristic one.  Judas was fed up.  He had a secret meeting with the Pharisees and became their puppet.  He would betray Jesus.  The Pharisees thought this would be a fool-proof plan.  Judas, many think, believed he was forcing the hand of Jesus causing Him to rise up.

This plan backfired.

Have you ever thought were doing the right thing only to find the plan backfired?  Here are a few thoughts to help you.

1.  Is your plan based on circumstances?  Sometimes we desire to see change but it has nothing to do with the person.  The circumstances are not what we expected.  Instead of examining the root issue, it is easier to pin the problem on the current leadership.

2.  Is your plan based on comfort? Judas received 30 pieces of silver.  The men thought they would receive honor and glory.  What is it that you believe to receive with the plan you are considering or enacting?

3.  Is your plan a complaint or a cause?  If you have a complaint or particular issue then the biblical response is to approach the problem not circumvent it.  According to Scripture, you are to go and attempt to resolve the problem.  If that doesn’t work then take 2-3 with you.  After that doesn’t work then take up a cause.  However, if it is a complaint right now, go and talk to the person first.

4.  Is your plan Christlike?  Finally, we must make sure that what we are planning and praying mimics the ideals of Jesus.  Are the attitudes reflecting Jesus?  Are we being above board or behind the scenes. Is the way we are treating those involved reflecting the values of Jesus?

May we desire the best for all involved in the pleasure, pain and progress of following Jesus.  He desires to bless us, not have life backfire on us.

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