Start at the Beginning

by Lester Young

What do you do when you don’t know what to do? Like when you’ve got a problem or pressing situation you need to deal with, and you don’t have even a clue how to begin. What do you do when it seems like you never really know what to do? Do you ever just get tired of not knowing what to do??

If any of those questions strike a chord with you, then I’ve got the answer you need. “How can you know what my answer is!? You don’t even know my problem!” Well, that’s true – I don’t. But it doesn’t matter, because the answer’s still the same regardless of the issue you’re facing. Stay with me.

Conventional wisdom tells us that in order to deal effectively with a problem we need to study it from every possible angle and consider every possible solution. And, admittedly, that sounds pretty reasonable. Indeed, there’s only one drawback to that approach: it’s all wrong. If you’re alone in some pitch-black surroundings, what’s the first thing you naturally do? Do you study the darkness to try to find a way to get yourself out of it? No, of course not. You look for a light, any light – large or small, bright or dim. Maybe a star in the night sky or a headlight far off – any type of light that might help you get your bearings. But once you find that light, it becomes the focal point for your movement, right?

Studying the problem – though it may be conventional wisdom – is just like studying the darkness. You can end up wasting an inordinate amount of time looking for ‘light’ where there isn’t any. If the solution were truly ‘in’ the problem there would not be a problem in the first place; just as if light were an actual part of darkness you wouldn’t have darkness, it’d be light. The fundamental issue here is that ‘conventional’ wisdom will always be limited by conventional thinking, which can also accurately be called “‘natural’ thinking” or “the ways of the [natural, physical] world.”

My answer to you, then, is not to study the problem but find some light and study it instead. That’s really the only way you can become oriented. Go toward the light. That’s also why it doesn’t matter what your problem is; the answer was, is and always will be the same: Head for the Light! Jesus is the Life and the Light of the whole world (John 1:4-5, 9; 8:12); which means He’s got all the answers – to every question, to every problem, to every situation, to every circumstance.

Jesus created it all; why wouldn’t He know how to fix it? (Psalm 33:6; John 1:3, 10, 14; Ephesians 3:9; Colossians 1:16; Hebrews 1:2) And what’s really great is that if you’ve made Him your personal Lord and Savior, you’ve actually got access to all that knowledge and information (John 16:13-15). You have a Blood-bought, covenant-sworn right to all the Wisdom and knowledge you’ll ever need for every problem you’ll ever encounter! (1 Corinthians 2:7; James 1:5)

So, how do you go about obtaining the specific answers you need right now? Again, I don’t know the problems you’re facing, but the first step is always the same, and Proverbs 1:7 spells it out: “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge.” Job 28:28 declares, “Behold, the fear of the LORD, that is wisdom.” And two scriptures, Psalm 111:10 and Proverbs 9:10, both say, “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom.” Notice a pattern developing here?

The first step to the wisdom and knowledge you need is always to fear the Lord – it’s just that simple. No ifs, ands or buts… straight from the Book. Now that doesn’t mean God wants you to be afraid of Him and not come to Him, as though you think He’s going to hurt you or something. No, no: that word ‘fear’ means to reverentially respect Him by obediently listening to and doing whatever He says to you, even more than you would a beloved earthly father. It means you honor and respect your Heavenly Father so much that you’ve already made the decision to accept whatever He says to you as true and right – even before you hear what it is and regardless of whether or not you initially understand it (Matthew 6:33; Romans 3:4). In other words, you’ve already settled it within yourself that “God’s right; He knows more than I do and I’m gonna be obedient and do whatever He says, period!”

When you have a problem and go to the Lord with that attitude, you’re well on your way to getting the answer you need. And what’s more, the Wisdom He gives you won’t just beat around the bush; it’ll go straight to the root of the matter to free you from that issue once and for all – because freedom is His perfect will for you (Mark 11:12-21; 2 Corinthians 3:17).

So when you’re facing a situation – any situation – start at the Beginning (Revelation 1:8, 21:6, 22:13). It just makes sense, doesn’t it? Jesus has all the answers. As a matter of fact, He is the Answer. Why wouldn’t you study the Light instead?

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