Read – 1 Chronicles 24
Focus v. 5
Making difficult decisions may well be my second least favorite thing to do. The only reason it is not number one is because I am saving that place for the unlikely possibility that I happen to encounter something I like even less. There was a time when I believed this was a serious personality weakness, and I held people who made difficult decision easily in high esteem. I have since come to the realization one is not necessarily better than the other just different.
In today’s reading David assigns officers among the priests who will serve in the temple that Solomon will build. Unlike our western cultural pattern in which we would carefully select those who demonstrate what we determine to be leadership qualities, David has them selected by lot. If we were to follow this pattern in contemporary churches we might select our pastors through a process of rolling dice or drawing straws. In a culture obsessed with control that would seem like foolishness, however, in a culture that believed that God was in control of everything, it actually made a lot of sense. King David trusted God to choose the leaders among the priests.
Now, one might argue that perhaps David could also have sought God to show him who to appoint a then appoint them which is actually a pattern he followed with some other tough decisions he had to make. The point in this is not whether it is better to make decisions by thinking them through or by rolling some dice. The point is that, at least in our western culture, we seem to have an obsession about being in control, and I’m not sure how healthy that is particularly within our churches.
There is tremendous sense of freedom that comes with acknowledging that not only do we not have to be in control, but that even when we think we are, we really control only that which God allows us to manipulate. If we are honest we further realize that most often when we manipulate things our own way they typically don’t turn out so well. On the other hand when we take our big decisions to the Lord and ask for His direction, we find they typically work out better in the long run even though we at times do not like the direction He gives us. As difficult as letting go of control might be for some of us, it has multiple benefits. Among these are the sense of freedom and peace that comes with not feeling like we have to control everything…or anything for that matter. Life really becomes a lot less stressful when we let go of laying claim to being responsible for things over which we have little control. If God is really in control of everything as the Bible seems to claim, it seems a little foolish for me to believe I have some misguided responsibility to micromanage or manipulate what He is attempting to do in my life. Perhaps there is at least a little wisdom in the words of the pop song, recently voted as “most irritating song in the galaxy” by my teenage son, and made popular by the Disney movie Frozen: “Let it go, Let it go…”