Every progressive effort starts with a step toward change and a holy dissatisfaction with status quo.
Phil:3:13: Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before,
A winner …says, “There is a better way.”.
A loser…. says, “That is the way it has always been done around here.”
Philippians 4:13: I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me.
Life is full of opportunities to continue to do the same things. One man defined insanity this way: Doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results. Expectations, persistence of others, voices from the past, and other forces impugn on our ability to think new, creative thoughts about what we do.
How do you get into the “better way” mentality? A favorite saying of mine is, “If it ain’t broke, break it.” What? Don’t you mean, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” No, I meant what I wrote. “If it ain’t broke, break it.” Many times we build traditional barriers around an activity structured on preference and our limited understanding at the time. A man displayed curiousity about the way his wife cooked a roast beef. She would always cut the ends off. Thinking there must be a great culinary secret to this method he asked her why. “I don’t know,” she replied, “my mother taught me that way.” Pressed for information on the private process he went to her mother. “I don’t know,” she replied, “my mother taught me that way.” Perplexed he drove to the matron of the family’s home and asked again. “Oh,” she quickly responded, “my roasting pan was too short to hold the full roast.”
Most processes need to be repaired regularly. Now, you don’t want to tear up a good thing, so there are many other rules of change and improvement like: Always give a change time to go through the curve of lagging productivity until people learn the new way and become adept before implementing the next change. AND Any change will be resisted in strength in direct proportion to its’ potential for improvement.
Life is full of processes and a “better way” mentality will protect you from foolish failure. A computer tech went out to resolve a problem one day in an executive secretary’s office. Seemed that every time she printed a letter she first had to print all the letters she had ever printed. It took an half a box of paper to print a letter! The cost and time of doing her job that way finally overcame her embarrassment and she asked for help. The fix was simple. She was simply doing what she had been shown. Open a file, go to the end, type the letter, print it. Problem was she had only be given one file name and all the letters since she began her job were in one file that she printed each time according to explicit instructions. Absurd? Real. Fortune 500 company. Executive secretary doing something that needed to be broken.
What about the way we converse with others? What about how we walk into a meeting? What about how we greet our friends? Are those processes that could use some “better way” mentality?
Jesus broke the mold for some in the way they treated their parents in a story related in Matthew 15. God gave a principle. Honor your fathers and mothers. They made a rule that discluded them conveniently. Tradition overruled wisdom and principle, and Jesus saw through the smoke. Matt 15:6: Thus have ye made the commandment of God of none effect by your tradition.
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Hebrews 12: 1-2 NIV.
Principle is principle is principle. Relationships, work issues, projects, and hobbies all present problems. When you allow others to help in the process, you prosper quicker. Sometimes they have the solution you need. Always, Jesus has the solution you need.
Where do you have a process, a way of doing things that really could use some improvement by being broken?
Are you ready to give up personal preferences and do what it takes to “break it and make it better” ?
Can you think of a scripture to apply that can help you into “better way” mentality?
Write what you are going to specifically do in the next 30 days about this.
Pray To Be Changeable
Father, quicken my mind and heart. Life is full of processes. You know the one that needs breaking and bettering at this moment. God, I can get so confused with all of the items in life. What item can I work on today? What am I doing that really does more damage than good? Where can I get a lift seeing you touch a new area of my life and give me a creative fresh approach? Cleanse my thinking, Lord. Jesus, be my wisdom, be my source, be my life giver. Holy Spirit release the fresh wind of Your brooding. Brood over my thoughts and bring order to their chaos that I might see clearly what You want to create.