I read, therefore I quote:
“Relationships protect us from myopia, selfishness and stupidity. They provide a mirror by which we can see ourselves, and they can help us to gain perspective when problems and immediate concerns turn us inward and threaten to dominate our lives. Spiritual advisers and Christian friends in particular are well suited to advise us, point out our strengths and weaknesses, and challenge us to think about life from an eternal perspective.”
I don’t believe I’m all that unique. There are those who’ve gone before me. Operating on the belief that there’s no shortage of people who have struggled with the very same things with which I struggle, I see no reason to start from scratch when it comes to problem solving and decision making. I’m a benchmarking kinda gal. I regularly seek out people who’ve done what I need and/or want to do. More importantly, I seek out people who’ve done those things WELL. Then I copy strive to emulate them. I’m
lazy pragmatic that way.
And I can learn just as easily from someone else’s mistakes. My voracious desire to avoid the same mistakes made by others is a foundational source of my relentless pursuit to live intentionally and to choose on purpose rather than in a self-focused, emotional vacuum. I will NOT take lightly my opportunities to positively impact the people God has placed in my life and I will NOT be blind to the possible damage I can do by neglecting to pay attention and to act intentionally when I come face to face with those daily opportunities. I’ve seen the damage that results when someone regularly operates on the assumption that the only decision making criteria needed is their own personal opinion and how they feel at the time. (yes. I know. I have issues. but they are extremely motivating.)
Like Mr. Sittser, I regularly look to books for wisdom:
“I receive guidance from people whom I have never met, never spoken to, and never known personally. Though strangers to me, they have exercised profound influence over my life. I consult them when I have to make a decisions by reading their writings and biographies . . . [they] are the great ‘cloud of witnesses’ who are still available to guide us through life.”
There are those who’ve gone before you. Who are your advisors? Your counselors? Your mentors? If you can’t identify them, ask God to reveal them to you today.
“Listen to advice and accept instruction, that you may gain wisdom in the future.”