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The Five Whys


Our verse for today comes from John 5:39, “I can of Myself do nothing.  As I hear, I judge; and My judgment is righteous, because I do not seek My own will but the will of the Father who sent Me.”


There was an exchange that went something like this: Why were you late to work?  The car wouldn’t start.  Why?  The battery was dead.  Why?  The car door was left open.  Why?  I had my five year old help unload the groceries.  Why?  Because I was watching the game and it was very close.  Now, this was not an actual conversation that I had or heard, rather it was an example illustrating a problem-solving tool simply called “The 5 Whys.”  This tool was offered up as a method to help get to the root cause of an issue.  And as simple as the above example may be, it speaks rather loudly to much of what you and I struggle with. 

We fail or underachieve in so many ways, yet we never quite seem to address what is the root cause for our shortfalls.  We have developed a tolerance for mediocrity, or we have grown accustomed to our pat answers so much so that we never uncover what is the source of our condition.  Could it be as simple as asking yourself a couple more “Whys” to get to where you need to be to begin to get to where you want to be?  Or more importantly, where God wants you to be?  Chances are, if your answers to a “Why” question revolve around the actions of another person, then you probably need to ask one or two more.  The late employee had plenty of adequate answers for arriving tardy, but only when he got to where it addressed his actions and decisions did we begin to discover something that he needed to address.


Jesus needed only to ask one time, for His answer was always that it was His Father’s will.  Because ours is so often not the case, we first need to accept that we have things that need addressing.  Then, if we’ll have the faith and the courage, we must ask our self why enough times to let God reveal to us His answer.  If we would do this, if we would trust Jesus and His love for us enough, then we would experience change that no gym, exercise class, diet, or self-help book could ever produce.  We would experience Christ, and the conforming to His very image.  Why?  Because God said so.


As we seek Him today, let God reveal to you what’s underneath that daily irritation, or that giant stumbling block.  And then let Him show you what to do about it.

Rich Holt | BCWorldview.org


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