As we get to the last post from chapter 10, I want to share some of the wisdom I have received from my wife of almost 40 years: “When you are troubled, or worried or upset, GET BUSY!”
Pastor Idleman says about the same thing at the end of chapter 10 when he talks about “feelings” keeping us from acting. You know the old statement we make to others when we want to sit tight and not take action: “I don’t feel like doing anything about it.”
Even if we don’t feel like taking action, make little steps in the right direction anyhow. Force yourself to act.
His story of being stuck in traffic and feeling so much impatience is a good example. Let me share an experience I had this week. I was sitting at a table with an older woman who is single after her husband has passed. I listened to her share her thoughts with others at the table about her life. She feels bad due to a medical condition. She goes nowhere. She sees no one. She said “I have no life.” I observed her. Watching her almost brought me to tears. There was no smile on her face as she was talking. Her voice had a sound of sadness and panic to it. This woman is stuck.
Of course, I don’t know her whole picture and I can’t present it to you.
What could she do?
Force herself to smile.
Make conversation about positive topics instead of discussing all her problems.
Find a way to burn some calories despite her medical condition.
Go someplace and see some people. Invite friends and get out of the house.
Again, I don’t know her situation. This is all me coming to conclusions based on a few moments at a table with a “stuck” person. I may be “way off.”
Pastor Idleman says that sometimes we know the truth. We know we need to obey God even when we don’t feel like it. Then he says the key: “When we obey God without the motivation to do so, our feelings will eventually catch up with our actions.”
In other words, get busy.
Maybe you have the steps to make your change in your mind. Take the first step, whether you want to do it or not. He says “you may find that along the road [to change], with God’s help, actions that at first seem artificial can become authentic.”
Listen to Pastor Idleman”; listen to my wife. They are both right.
Questions from Chapter 10:
1.It seems so natural to choose the path of least resistance, but that’s not what will lead us to AHA. How does the hard work of immediate action bring changes that the path of least resistance never could?
2.Passivity happens when we honor something over God. We rarely, if ever, intend for that to happen, so what leads us to honoring things like family, money and comfort above God?
3.What’s your “first step”? How will you act on it?
I’ve always believed “Fake it until you make it.”
I think Pastor Idleman would say that “fake it until you make it” is a good thing if the faking eventually becomes real and it sometimes does. DC