The Next Right Thing 1


“I wonder why it turned out so differently?”

I’d just finished telling my story to her students. Tears welled as she described her injury – broken vertebrae, paralysis, halo brace, details eerily reminiscent of my experience – yet this vibrant young woman stood in front of me and pondered our very different paths.

I shook my head and smiled. “We don’t get to decide the outcome. We just do what’s right and trust God.”

Kinda profound, huh? Usually I think of great responses after-the-fact, but I’ve been pondering this issue lately so I actually offered a coherent thought.

Our culture’s all about outcomes. Nothing wrong with having goals. Great to achieve stuff. The question, though, is whether the destination justifies any journey required to achieve it.

How often are we absolutely certain about what needs to happen, so certain we’re tempted to take a shortcut, bend the rules, twist the truth – just this once – to make it happen?

It’s just a white lie, right? They’ll never find out. It’s for the greater good. So many ways to justify what we know isn’t right, to accomplish what we’re sure is right. And suddenly we’re caught in a web of political expediency, trading what’s right for what’s practical.

Jesus said, “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” He didn’t say the other stuff wasn’t important. He said the kingdom stuff – truth, integrity, trust, love – comes first.

I’ve chased a crazy dream for a long time. I thought it was a 1500-mile bike ride, then I thought it was bike tours all over the country.

Right now it’s the FREEDOM TOURbuilding a community and cycling to bring hope and freedom to 22 kids at the HOME OF HOPE.

What’s supposed to happen with all of it? What’s the big picture, the best outcome? I don’t know, but there are times I’m certain it’s not going the way it should and God *needs my help* to get it right. At those moments, God and I laugh at me.

Rather than praying for my desired result, I seek wisdom to know what’s right in a confusing world.

My job? Do the next right thing, as best I can see it. And keep doing that.

There’s no limit to what can be accomplished by a group of committed, passionate people when they work together and trust God for the outcome.


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