It’s a poorly kept secret that I love technology. I love staying connected through social media and rely on an internet connection almost everywhere I am. I love it because I can connect with so many more people online than I can in person. Plus it’s fun. Or at least it’s fun for me.
But embracing technology means you decide to embrace a steep learning curve. And solving problems when something technically goes wrong can be a challenge.
One approach to solving a technical problem is to focus on on all the possibilities that could have come into play to create the problem.
The challenge, of course, is that there are about a million things that could be wrong. You could easily get lost in meaningless speculation. You could get paralyzed by it and end up taking out a notepad and pen, or just throw your device out the window.
Most of the time when something goes wrong, I sincerely don’t know what happened.
But almost all the time, I can solve it myself.
How? Not because I’m smart, but because I focus on what is clear, not on what is unclear.
Here’s what’s clear.
I know to shut down the program and reopen it. That solves it 90% of the time.
If that doesn’t work. I reboot. That solves about 99% of issues.
If that fails, I know there’s a user forum out there with a fix. And I google the problem and find a fix. That solves 99.9% of the issues.
For the very few remaining times, I can get help.
Whenever I focus on what is clear, it helps me wade through what is unclear.
The same is true spiritually.
Sure, there is a lot we don’t know. And sometimes you find yourself side tracked by that.
Maybe you find yourself asking “what if” and “could it be” to the point where it cause you to lose faith, not gain faith.
Do you ever get so distracted by the possibilities that you forget what you know?
Endless speculation can lead to a paralysis. Rather than discovering truths that can help you build a solid faith, endless speculation about what could be can prevent you from living a life of faith.
I love what Paul advised his protege, Timothy, in today’s reading.
When you’re not sure what to do spiritually, focus on what’s already clear, not what’s unclear.
What things do you already know that can help you build a life of faith today?
Belong – Because you can belong before you believe.
Do you have so many questions about the faith that sometimes they block some of the answers you’ve discovered along the way? What answers can you revisit today that can help you build faith?
Believe – Because those who belong often start to believe.
Is there a single ‘aha’ moment that moved you toward faith? How did that clarity help you believe? Would revisiting some ‘clear’ moments help move you through what’s presently unclear?
Become – Because those who believe can become someone new.
What is distracting you from becoming who God has called you to be? How can focusing on what is clear help you deal with the uncertainty of what is unclear, and build a life of faith for you today?
Dear God, as much as some days life seems overwhelming and we would love to know more, help us to focus on what you have made clear. Help us to rest on your promises and trust you even more deeply today than before. Through Christ, Amen.
– by Carey Nieuwhof