When Faced with a Dilemma

In John 5:30 – “By myself I can do nothing; I judge only as I hear, and my judgment is just, for I seek not to please myself but him who sent me.” What I gain from this scripture verse when I read it is that all decisions that I make should not be influenced by what is best for me but for both parties. The question is what guides me in my decision-making process? The bottom line being does it please the one who sent me.

The first point in my decision-making process is not to be emotional. For example, in Jesus’ first miracle changing the water into wine, Jesus was reluctant to perform the task requested my Mary, his mother when she anticipated that the wedding banquet was running out of wine for the guests. However, Jesus put aside his own unwillingness by providing 10 more barrels of wine for the reception. Therefore, this example, reminds me of always trying to focus on what I believe to be is the right thing to do in any situation. If I allow my feelings to get in the way then it would cloud my judgement and impede my ability to reach a successful outcome for all.

The second point is reserve judgement as relationships are always are evolving. For example, “Jesus’ Triumphal Entry into Jerusalem”, John 12: 12-19 suddenly becomes “The Crucifixion of Jesus”, John 19:17-30”, in the matter of a week. I still find it hard to comprehend how Jesus can go from being lauded has a King to being tried and convicted as a criminal in a week. When I reflect on these two events, I compare to the interaction of the continual relationships I have daily in my own life.  The key I believe is the way people react to an event. In Jesus’ case the significant verses that underlined Jesus ’anointing as King were that crowd had seen Jesus raise Lazarus from the dead and told other people of his miracle powers hence the glorification. John,19:17-19. Thus, was Jesus’ deification based on him continuing to go throughout life performing miracles or the values that he espoused through his teachings? Like the crowd’s reaction to Jesus as he was entering Jerusalem how many times are our relationships formed by how people interact with us that lays the foundation for an ongoing relationship? Do I just reflect on how many times my relationship with other people is formulated by how people are acting towards me in the present? However, I should think about how people have acted towards me previously and will in the future.

The third point is often a hasty  judgement  can lead to dire consequences  such as Jesus being sentenced to death? Is it because the people who feted him as he entered Jerusalem thought he was the solution to all their problems and when he didn’t provide them with the outcomes, they wanted they became frustrated and angry? Perhaps I need to question if that is my first reaction when people’s words and actions aren’t what I hoped for? I believe it is important to refrain from a snap judgement and arrive at a conclusion before you are across all the facts. Sometimes such a supposition can make me look foolish and regret my part in what has occurred. For example, like Pilate when he washed his hands after sentencing Jesus to death failed to realise his part in Christian history for his adjudication. Matthew 27-24. How often to I fail to realise the impact on others because of my words and actions in the heat of the moment.

The final point is that you have to trust your judgement. This is illustrated, when Pilate asks Jesus, “What have you done? “Jesus replies, “My kingdom is not from this world if it was my followers would be fighting to keep me from being handed over to the Jews.” John, 18:35-37. Jesus’ judgement was that his focus was carrying out his Father’s will for the greater good and to act beyond self. I believe that when I experience challenges, I need to have the faith that my response, firstly, is for a positive outcome for others and maybe not in three days as it was for Jesus through his resurrection but eventually there is a learning experience for me. So, ultimately, when I am faced with a dilemma, I need to realise that not everything is irretrievable but sometimes there are road blocks along the way that prevent a quick solution. More importantly, that on the journey is that I understand that my words and actions have hopefully resulted in assisting others in their lives.


For God all things are Possible.

In Mark 10:27, Jesus states, “For mortals it is impossible, but not for God, for God all things are possible.” So how does God make things possible?
I often think when I am in a challenging situation where seemingly is not a quick fix I pray even more earnestly to God for a possible solution. However, I find that solution is more of a process.

Step one of the process is that I know that the final solution will not be the result that I originally sought. After all I seek to do God’s will not mine. So, bearing that in mind, I need to come to a satisfactory outcome that requires a change in how I approach the issue. Therefore, I need to analyse all the factors that are contributing to the problem and just not from my point of view.

Step two, God is asking me to take into account how the other parties are reacting to the dispute and are they interested in changing their position in dealing with the matter. Furthermore, I must differentiate my perceptions from their actual words and actions.

Step three, I think sometimes God provides a solution where things just take care of themselves. This means if I continue to pray for answers, act in a conciliatory manner towards other parties and allow the issues to take their natural course things do improve. Why? because as a mere mortal I don’t focus on the issue negatively but instead look at the possibilities with the view that God makes all things possible.