My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, – James 1:19
Hear my cry for mercy as I call to you for help, as I lift up my hands toward your Most Holy Place. – Psalm 28:2
My mother, my wife and my sisters make the best pinto beans in the world. Yes, yes, I know your (mom, spouse, sister, girlfriend.) make the best pinto beans too. The point is that the best “mess of beans” you will ever eat, took a long time to get that way. Pinto beans don’t cook in 20 minutes. They are cooked for hours. According to my wife, they have to be soaked, the water has to be flavored (ham bone, whatever), and then the beans themselves are cooked, sometimes overnight. And as any self-respecting Texan will tell you, they are much better the next day. So, then you ask what is the problem with a pinto bean? Simple, it takes too long. Now, when we are eating the beans (with cornbread of course), we know that it was well worth the wait.
So then, why don’t we approach other problems in life like the problem of the pinto bean. This happens a lot with men, but we are not the only ones. We see a problem and we want a quick fix. Often times, we don’t even wait until the problem is fully explained to us before we launch off into a solution. Now some will say, “sometimes an emergency exists and needs an urgent solution”. True, but how often do we really find ourselves in that situation? Even firefighters approaching a blaze want to make sure they know the situation before they run in. Sometimes, it takes a while to fully understand the situation. We need to comprehend the issue from many sides.
We need to weigh the ramifications of any action before one is taken. In short, we need to think before we act. Of course, the reality is there is a major step needed before we even begin this thought process. Can you guess what it is?
Would any one of us launch into a dangerous situation without making sure we were protected, supported and notified of any issues along the way? Nope. It really doesn’t matter how big or small the situation may seem, we need to hesitate just a moment before we act on our “solution” to the problem. Have you ever seen a situation, sized it up, acted on it and felt “oh so proud” of your resolution and then discovered that you weren’t even asked to help? I have and it leaves a sting on the person who was having the issue. Slow down, gather intel, look at it from other view points, ask for insight and feedback, most importantly pray, seek Godly counsel, and look into the Word. Those steps will not only help find a true and God directed solution, it helps us see Him at work instead of ourselves.
Next time we are faced with an issue, let’s approach it like a pot of beans. Slow to prepare, but oh so good to enjoy.