How to know if a “problem” needs your attention or not.


Problems come and go. The tyranny of the urgent says every problem is major. Yet in truth, some problems are significant while other problems aren’t. In our panic mode, we need to stop and ask: Is this a problem that has enough significance that God wants us to address it, or is it a passing problem that doesn’t need a lot of our time or attention?

Begin by asking:

  1. This problem either means something or doesn’t mean something. Which is it?
  2. Who could we call that would give us an objective, outsider perspective?
  3. What criteria will we use to determine if this means something?
  4. If this problem means something then we can either respond to it or choose to wait or choose not respond to it.
  5. If we feel we must respond to it, what different options for response could we have?
  6. What could it cost us to wait?
  7. What could it cost us not to wait?
  8. What could it cost us not to respond?
  9. What could it cost us to respond?
  10. Is there anything we need to do if our response is to wait or not to respond?
  11. If we determine to respond which of our ideas for response seem to have the best chances of success?
  12. What do we do next?