Putting that before how

This may not apply to you. You may be a decisive, quick and solid commitment making person. If so, decide now that you don’t need to read this.

Recently, I was talking to a friend who is great at thinking through how things could happen, about what steps are needed to do something. (It’s not me, but it could be.) People like us are able to identify options and implications. We can weigh the potential outcomes of various actions. We can identify “what if” and “If this, then that” scenarios forever.

Which is the problem.

When we take that strength and we apply it to situations when we are asking God for direction, we can get stuck. We are hesitant to make a decision because we don’t want to make the wrong one. We don’t want to mistake our strategy for God’s direction.

You know what I mean?

My friend outlined a long history of interest in a particular area of ministry. He identified several events and experiences which affirm a growing capacity for ministry in that area. He talked some uncertainty about

Finally, I looked at him and said, “You need to decide that you are committed to doing this. And then you may see how fall into place. Sometimes we need to decide before we know how. It’s where trust comes.”

I confess. I did choke up a little when I said it. I realized that I was talking to myself.

It’s Peter getting out of the boat and the other guys staying on the boat. It’s Daniel choosing to follow Jewish dietary restrictions and his own prayer convictions. It’s Philip going into the desert on the one road, and then starting a conversation with the chariot passenger who came by.

It’s you and me saying, “yes” before we know all about how.