Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Nine on the Tenth -- Paradigm Shifts

All this week, I've been sitting in school workshops.  The last two days have been a presentation of the "Seven Habits of Highly Effective People" and one of the big topics has been paradigm shifts.  As part of his introduction, the presenter posed a question to the group, "What is something that has happened in your life that led to a paradigm shift?"  A few people shared stories of events in their lives that had led to significant change.  I didn't volunteer to share, but if I had, I would have said, "When my teenage daughter was diagnosed with cancer." 

There's nothing like suffering and loss to change your paradigms.  There are definitely some military families who've had their paradigms shifted this week.

In Randy Alcorn's book, "If God Is Good", he shares nine paradigm-shifting insights that he learned through studying the book of Job.  If I wasn't so drained from sitting in workshops all day every day this week, I might be able to come up with one more on my own, thus making today a true Ten on the Tenth.  But I just don't think that's going to happen tonight.  So, without further ado, here are...

Nine Lessons To Be Learned from Job (from Randy Alcorn)

1.  Life is not predictable or formulaic.

2.  Most of life's expectations and suffering's explanations are simplistic and naive, waiting to be toppled.

3.  When the day of crisis comes, we should pour out our hearts to God, who can handle our grief and even our anger.

4.  We should not turn from God and internalize our anger, allowing it to become bitterness.

5.  We should weigh and measure the words of friends, authors, teachers, and counselors, finding whatever truth they might speak without embracing their errors or getting derailed by their insensitivities. 

6.  We should not insist on taking control by demanding a rational explanation for the evils and suffering that befall us.

7.  We should look to God and ask him to reveal himself to us; in contemplating his greatness we will come to see him as the Answer above all answers.

8.  We should trust that God is working behind the scenes and that our suffering has hidden purposes that one day, even if not in this life, we will see.

9.  We should cry out to Jesus, the mediator and friend whom Job could only glimpse, but who indwells us by grace.

Hmmmmm....Good stuff, huh?

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