Life is Like a Maze…
Life Is Like a Maze
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Life IS like a maze. Every which way we turn, we’re bumping into something else and we can can’t seem to find a solution. Okay…that’s not always the case – we make decisions all the time that are incredibly easy. But if you think back over the past few weeks…each of those seemingly small decisions we make can and DO make a huge impact on our (and those around us) lives.  So yeah, if I think about it like that, we really are being forced to make decisions at every turn.

We’ve talked (well I’ve written) a lot about making wise decisions over the past few weeks. Today, we’ll look at how we’re wired (and then getting off our butt and doing something about it). The way we’re wired seems to have an impact on what we’re going to do as a result of what we hear. Considering my background in psychology (and our collective experience working with various types of people), we can all recognize the impact that our personalities play in our decision making skills.  In particular, what we do as a result of hearing (notice I didn’t say listening) “wise” words. Consider the following types of people…do you see yourself in any of these descriptions? 

The “Over-Thinker”: the over-thinker over-processes every single decision to the point of becoming paralyzed in their thoughts. They don’t know what to do with the information they’ve received so they don’t know how to make a decision…and therefore, they typically don’t do anything at all.

The “Impulsive Decision-Maker”: this person has the opposite problem of the over-thinker in that they can be rash, impulsive and make decisions too quickly. This person is of the belief that if a particular decision doesn’t work out, they’ll just make another decision. Unfortunately, when you make decisions this way, you aren’t taking the time or patience to really think through “what’s the wisest thing to do?”

The “Conflict-Avoider”: this person hates confrontation…including their own issues. It could be that they have issues with their career, marriage, finances, etc. but they won’t do anything different because the idea of confronting the issue terrifies them. So, rather than make a decision, they’ll avoid making any changes. A variation of this person is the “procrastinator,” who will delay making any decisions until the absolute last minute (which of course often creates conflict).

The “Happy Go Lucky”: actually, this is the person who doesn’t want to do anything different because it’ll mess up their routine. Perhaps they’ve convinced themselves that God wants them to be happy, so they don’t want to change anything because the “happiness” they currently know might disappear. These people are full of excuses, but are often better known as “fools.” Not to beat this person up because I’ve been there, but these types of people have a tendency to think that if they commit themselves to God, that they’ll have to adhere to a long list of boring rules – who wants to follow the rules when there’s a party?!

Little do they know that when we begin to trust and obey GOD, the happiness and joy will still be there…in fact, it’s way better. But, so many of us waste our lives seeking pleasure in a way that doesn’t please GOD, and it’s only caused us drama. Let me tell you, since closing the books on all of that chaos that I once thought was so fun (the partying, the gossip [okay, I still like a little gossip every now and then], etc), I don’t experience much drama in my life.

With that said, if you’re going to choose GOD, quit screwing around and follow him already! Or rather, if anything I’ve said in the past few weeks has been speaking to your heart, now is the time to do something about it. 

So, regardless of how we’re wired…regardless of our past or current circumstances…how do we change so that we’re more like Jesus Christ?

If you’re an “Over-Thinker,” learn to trust. Remember that spirituality is a journey and that you’ve got to trust that God is going to handle the details. It’s not about the destination, but learning to walk in faith.
Self Help RS
If you’re an “Impulsive Decision-Maker,” learn to be patient. Stop being so quick to make a decision and learn to wait. In fact, if you need a filter…ask yourself “is this the wisest thing to do,” before making any decisions. It’s kinda like my 24 hours shopping filter, “do I really need this?”

“Show me your ways, LORD, teach me your paths. Guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long.” Psalm 25: 4-5

If you’re a “Conflict Avoider,” learn to stand up for yourself. Learn to draw some boundaries for yourself and don’t let anyone push you a direction you disagree with. Granted, I hate conflict as much as the next person (probably has a lot to do with why I hate talking on the phone), but there are certain things that I pay close attention to.

If you’re a “Procrastinator,” make a decision already. Just do it!

If you’re “Happy Go Lucky,” listen to your heart and learn to obey. Obedience to God is the highest form of worship. God knows us better than we know ourselves and until we allow him to lead, we’ll never know true happiness. Recognizing that I was once this person, I speak from experience…the grass really is greener on this side of the fence. 

With all of that said, know this…until you’re ready to make a decision- GOD is going to stay out of your life and let you live it however you see fit. But, the moment you decide to have a more active relationship with him, he’s going to rock your world. So… what’s your next move?

Disclosure: the above message was adapted from my church’s sermon last weekend. To listen to the original message, click HERE.

38 COMMENTS

    I needed that poem this morning. Thanks so much for sharing it. I think I’m a combination of a lot of these things…definitely a conflict avoider to an extent. Just depending on the circumstance. And I’m an over-thinker/achiever. I’ve battled that my whole life and I find that while I am productive in a lot of things, I miss out on some of the simpler things by over thinking them. Beautifully written.

    “He’s going to rock your world.” AMEN to that!!! I very much appreciate your “take no prisoners” approach to some of this – some people will only respond when shoved with some truth.

    This was kind of a departure from what I’ve usually seen in your posts (gorgeous photos and the like).

    I enjoyed glimpsing another aspect of your talents.

    =)

    I love this post :) You are such a great leader! May God bless you and your whole life.

    This is very beautiful Ashley. Well written and very interesting! P.S. I love your header!

    AMEN! GOD IS ROCKING MY WORLD! LOVE HIM! LOVE ALL THAT HE WANTS FOR ME – way better than anything I could ever imagine! LOVE that you are sharing HIM here!

    Hugs!
    Jill

    Great post – I love these thoughts for the week. One thing a counseling professor told me really stuck: before you say something, decide if they need to hear it or you need to say it. If the answer is you need to say it, it probably doesn’t need to be said. Sometimes I think that was God’s voice that day – teaching me a lesson in thinking things through and being a better decision maker.

    what a wonderful post, Ashley! I’m definitely an impulsive decision maker or as I like to say it…I just like instant gratification. Not a good thing. :(

    wonderful post ashley! and yes life is a maze =) but I think God has the best answers.

    Amazing post. I am the Impulsive Decision Maker. Thanks for sharing. I learn so much from your posts! I am still learning to be patient and never be quick to make decisions and just trust in HIM. Thank you!

    xoxox

    great post and I LOVE your new header! Your portrait shot is beautiful!!

    I’m a mix between the first two but have my happy moments too. Im a type A personality. Ocd, clean freak, organized or my life is chaos haha which is hard with kids bc its always opossite half the time ;-)! I love the new background and header is bright and cheery. Makes me happy spring is almost here :-D!

    I really like seeing your face back in your header! :)
    I think I fit in all of those descriptions in different aspects of my life. I’m just all over the place, but I totally needed to read this today! Thank you for this.

    I love these posts – I always find myself pondering your words later trying to apply them to my life.

    GREAT GREAT GREAT post

    I love this post! It’s so true, having been the Happy-Go-Lucky person before, and knowing now what was waiting for me once I fully accepted God into my heart and decided to live by His word, I wish I would have found the path much sooner! I now have a peace from within that I never knew existed.
    I always love when you do more serious writing, and today is no different!

    Great post!!! I love that poem! And I think I’m a combo of the top 3….it just depends on what kind of decisions and the situations surrounding. The main thing that I need to keep reminding myself is to TRUST in God.

    Wonderful post! I really like the new look you have going on!

    Thanks for posting this.Very good.

    this is a good word Ashley. Thanks for using your blog to share more than just beautiful images.

    Oh my goodness- I think I have been all of those people at one time or another. Great post today Ashley!

    Loved the last line…”He’s going to rock your world”. Isn’t that the truth!!! When we give God total control when we trust Him with everything, He gives us joy, peace and love that is unspeakable…you just can’t put it into words it is so amazing!

    Fantastic post Ashley. Seriously, as I have said before, it makes me so happy that you are bold about your faith on your blog! Great verse and picture!

    Wonderful post and photos (loving the new header)!

    I am definitely the “over-thinker”, have been all my life. Great words of wisdom and advice. And I looove the new look!

    Great post Ashley! Not only are you a great photographer you are an awesome writer!!

    that’s me [michelle] up there. i can’t figure out how to delete previous comment [was signed into wrong googgle account]

    What a great post. I am kind of a mix of all of them. ha ha. Sometimes I can’t make a decision, then other times I make impulsive decision, I also procrastinate and I don’t like messing up my routine. ha ha. I always enjoy reading these.

    “Quit screwing around and follow him already!”

    Love that!

    Thanks, Ashley! Glad you linked up over at Michelle’s!

    Amen Sister! Tapping into God’s power is our choice. Let go and let God.

    :)
    ~Tabitha

    You are a wise woman, Ashley. Thank you for sharing these posts.

    Marla @ http://www.blueskiesphotoblog.com

    Yeah, I needed to read this today. I was feeling a bit overwhelmed.

    Such a great message!

    And the photo is another great lesson – what a creative twist to place this verse with this picture.

    Good post.

    He is truly worth following! What great contrast in the verse and what is written on that building.

    Is your header new? I like it!

    Hi Ashley,

    Love the scripture you chose for the photo. We are not to lean on self, but on the Lord! Amen!

    Blessings,
    Judy

    Wonderful food for thought, Ashley! I think I’ve been in all categories at different times in my life. Giving it all to God has been the path to sanity for me :)

    I’d be the procrastinator, big time. Wonderfully written…thank you so much for sharing that :)

    Hi Ashley,
    First I just want to apologize for being THE worst this week and taking an entire week to read this post and respond — I apologize for that!!! Just one of those weeks, you know?

    Secondly, I will admit that I am 100 percent a conflict avoider — so you have given me a lot to think about here when it comes to confrontation and how I deal with it.

    I will echo what one of your other commenters said: you are a gift leader, and I am grateful for your vision here.

    Thanks, Ashley! I hope you’ll link up with Hear It, Use again this week — I promise it won’t take me a week to read your post!!


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