People often decide to move forward with their plans after they reach a certain degree of certainty that their plans will be successful. However, when it comes to moving forward in the things of God, that is not always possible. God frequently leads us to the next step after we’ve completed the first. God seems to insist we walk by faith and not by sight. And often, God does not fill in all the blanks; God leaves certain details out of his instructions and still commands us to move. See Numbers 13 where God challenged his people to move forward into the promised land with only His Word as guarantee that they would inherit the promise. But they hesitated; they balked; they were paralyzed with fear not because of what they knew but because of what they didn’t know. They didn’t know how God would act and so they refused to move forward. God did not provide all the details.
“. . .. So when we are confronted by indecision, we need to move forward despite our doubts or confusion. We need to move forward, even if we’re only taking small steps. Those steps, regardless of which direction they go in, are likely to give us new information and experience. Our actions send ripples into the world. The situation may change or reveal itself in a new way once we have moved to a new vantage point. Think of your life as a movie you are watching. You are midway through the movie and you don’t know what is going to happen. But you’re not supposed to know what is going to happen. The movie is not over yet. This is the challenge posed by the demon of indecision: Can you move forward in the face of uncertainty? Can you co-exist with confusion and not-knowing and take the next step?”
God is calling us to move forward; to execute the plans he has given us for ministry in our several contexts. I challenge you to obey God and do just that. This year let us resolve to act; to act in concert with the known will of God and then to expect God to show up and show out. Each of you have dreams and aspirations of God making your life better. You have prayed about it, you have discussed it in great detail; yet, you have not acted in line with your conversation. You have procrastinated, hesitated because all of the blanks have not been filled in. You may ask can we do it? Who will help us? Where will the money come from? Among others. You declare you’re waiting on God and I declare God is waiting on you. Make this the Year of Execution in your church, in your life, and in your community.
Trust God’s Word found in Jeremiah 29:11, “I know the plans that I have for you, declares the Lord. They are plans for peace and not disaster, plans to give you a future filled with hope.” Amazing, God has planned for your success; the question is “Why haven’t you acted based on God’s plans?” Perhaps you’re afraid or perhaps you just can’t handle of the stress of not knowing. However, when you do not move in concert with God’s plans, the stress of indecision, the stress of inaction, becomes even greater. The truth is we often try to wait until we feel like moving; rather than simply moving in faith.
Trudy Boyle confesses “My number one stress creator is not completing a task I have set for myself or following through promptly. The stress is compounded when I take on more than I can deliver in the allotted time. And my final penchant, which makes up what I call my “stress triangle” is to ignore the whole lot until the last sixty seconds! How do I let this controllable stress occur? The honest answer is that I sometimes let my feelings boss me around. One of the puzzling lessons I have learned is that, more often than not, I do not feel like doing most of the things that need doing.
Margie Warrell gives us seven (7) strategies for moving past the fear that causes us to procrastinate which leads to our inaction. I challenge each church to use these strategies as you plan your agenda for the upcoming conference year. Here are the strategies in a nutshell:
- Write down your goal and give yourself a deadline.
- Break your goal into small pieces.
- Visualize the future you want.
- Harness fear.
- Build accountability.
- Reward progress.
- Act bravely daily. Starting today
Finally, understand that God rewards action based on his Word. His Word will not return to God void. If it doesn’t work, the lessons you learn by doing it will be immeasurable for your future action. Don’t allow the fear of failure to keep you from your destiny in God. Make this “The Year of Execution!”
 Krech, G. & Anderson L. (2003). Defeating the Demons of Inaction: Indecision Retrieved from http://www.todoinstitute.org/library/public/defeating_the_demons_of_inaction_indecision.php
 Boyle, T. (2003) The Stress of not Getting Things Done. Retrieved from http://www.todoinstitute.com/library/public/the_stress_of_not_getting_things_done.php
 Warrell, M. (2013). Why You Procrastinate, and How to Stop It. Now. Retrieved from https://www.forbes.com/sites/margiewarrell/2013/03/25/why-you-procrastinate-and-how-to-stop-it-now/#3b4e73481837