In The Purpose Driven Life, Day 3, Rick Warren begins by asking this question:
“What drives your life?”
In the discussion, Warren talks about “quiet desperation” and “aimless distraction.” All of us can probably describe what each of those means and be able to give examples of what they look like within our own lives.
Each of us also knows how these really mean that we’ve lost focus on what drives our lives. A truly frustrating state of mind, to be sure.
While we could look at this topic from a variety of angles, let’s focus on only one. In Warren’s words…
“You become effective by being selective.”
Taking on too much. Worrying. Being too busy. People pleasing. Mediocrity. Following feelings. Seeking acceptance from the world. Approval seeking. Making comparisons.
That’s my list. It’s what overwhelms me if I’m not selective. If I fail to focus and instead follow fads and feelings, I’m not at all effective. Instead, I’m depressed and frustrated, all because I’m not being selective.
Being selective means choosing best over good enough. It means pursuing expertise instead of being a generalist. Most important, for Christians being selective means letting God decide who, what, when, where, why, and how.
God’s word to Joshua when he was likely feeling overwhelmed be being thrust into leadership and given an overwhelming task to accomplish gives us the instruction we need.
“Keep the law always on your lips. Meditate on it day and night, careful to do everything it says. Then you will be prosperous and successful.” (Joshua 1:8)
For the Christian, then, being selective means:
- Knowing God’s word fully.
- Studying God’s word continually.
- Obeying God’s word completely.
- Leaving the results up to God.
Being selective involves walking a God-directed path. We can only know the steps to take, though, if we know God’s directions. Only then will we be effective in truly eternal ways.