We’ve all felt it. That feeling of facing a problem that seems insurmountable. A dilemma with no good solution. A situation that has you perplexed, stumped. You’ve tried everything you can think of, and you’re stuck. You’ve battled an issue for a long time, and it never seems to get any better.
You don’t know how else to reconcile that strained relationship. Kick that bad habit. Be patient with the problem person at work. Return to that embarrassing place of failure and try again.
What if you could remove yourself from your situation for five minutes? What if you could separate yourself from the thick of the issue and evaluate it objectively, in the third person?
What if I told you… you can.
Here’s how: Think of the person you love most in your life. It could be your spouse, your Mom or Dad, your son or daughter, your grandchild, your best friend. Okay, now imagine they just called you up, and asked if you had a minute to talk.
You say yes, you set down what you were working on, and settle into a comfortable chair. And as you do, your loved one begins telling you all about a situation they are facing, a decision that has them stuck, a problem person in their life that they don’t know what to do with, an aspect of their character they want to change but don’t know where to begin…
And it is the exact situation / person / habit / problem / dilemma you are currently facing!
Now – you love this person dearly. You want the very best for them. So – what would you tell them? What would you want for them? How would you advise them? Where would you tell them to begin? What action steps would you encourage them to take?
What would you tell someone else – someone you dearly love, a person for whom you desire the very best in their life – if they came to you with the same problem, question, dilemma, or difficulty you are now facing?
To say it another way:
What would you tell you, if you came to you with this question, and you loved you and wanted what was best for you?
Sometimes thinking of our struggle or issue – as if the person we loved most in life was facing it – can help us to see options and think of solutions that did not occur to us before. Sometimes the immanence of our issue stifles our creativity. The stress of our struggle paralyzes our problem-solving capabilities. The constancy of our dilemma neuters our imagination.
But – if we could lift our heads above the surface of the tumult long enough to think objectively about the possibilities – as if our dearest loved one was facing the very same thing and was asking for our advice – all of a sudden, we can begin to have new insights for possible solutions!
Three Questions for Spiritual Growth:
- Question 1 – “Father, what do You think or feel about this?”
- Question 2 – What would a better ______ be doing?
- Question 3 – What would you counsel your best friend to do?