3 Questions That Could Change Your Life
Over 15 years ago, when I set out to become a financial advisor, my Life Mission was to “help free people financially so they could do what they were meant to do with their lives”. I created 3 questions and made them the primary focus when I met with people. Even I was surprised by the results; incredible stories of changed lives as people took control over their futures. Now, these questions are well baked into my DNA. I share them in hopes that they will become “top of mind” for you.
Q1: What is your vision?
Open ended questions create the opportunity to explore and dig. Initially when asked this question, people tend to cast dreamy ideas of adventure, peace, fun, warmth: Travel the world, work in the garden, spend time with family, get into shape, volunteer. Good stuff! Yet, a little follow-up probing turns up a lack of enduring meaning.
As we age, most of us realize that some things are richer and more satisfying than others. Health for example; without it most other things are not so great. True spiritually too. Leaving God out of the vision leads to lack of fulfillment and lasting legacy; a hollow existence. For Christ Followers, I suggest reframing the question:
What is God’s vision for my life?
Afterall, he created you and placed you here in this place at this time. Did he just do this for kicks? I have come to realize that he has no problem with the “good stuff”, but because he loves us so much, he wants more for us than just this.
“That is what the Scriptures mean when they say, ‘No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love him.’”
The Apostle Paul 1 Corinthians 2:9 (NLT)
Think in terms of more. Spend a Dedicated Day of prayer and fasting and ask God, “What is your vision for my life?”
Q2: What’s keeping you from doing this sooner?
If we have a vision and it is what we want, and what God wants for us, why would we want to wait for it? So many think, “When I retire, then I will do it.” What is retirement in God’s eyes anyway? Why should God’s vision for our lives be put off? Makes no sense! If God wants it for us, it is in his will and, as Jesus said:
“But if you remain in me and my words remain in you, you may ask for anything you want, and it will be granted!
John 15:7 (NLT)
Do you really believe God will give you what you ask for to fulfill his vision for your life?
The first barrier out of most people’s mouths when asked this question is money; the lack of it or fear of the lack of it. At first blush I accept this. I spent years harboring the “fear of lack”, but I have come to the point that I don’t buy in anymore. When I left my good job in the medical device industry, I was forced to confront my money fears head on. Scared me to death! I was forced to decide if I really believed God’s promise to me – that he would provide everything I need. The truth is that I did not really believe this until I went straight in and experienced it.
If you abide in him, he provides. Its true.
Everything is his to provide and he is willing to grant it to us. By the same token, God expects us to be wise, not rash. Foolishness is not rewarded. Removing the money barrier takes planning.
So don’t go to war without wise guidance; victory depends on having many advisers.
Proverbs 24:6 (NLT)
There is a path to take you from where you are into God’s vision for your life. I describe how to develop a “Travel Light Plan” in my book, Unlock Your Life. This is a comprehensive plan, including financial strategies, to strip away all the barriers that hinder you as the writer of Hebrews describes:
“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us. 2 We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith.”
Hebrews 12:1-2 (NLT)
Nothing like hiking with a light backpack! All is made possible by “keeping your eyes on Jesus” who has shown us the path.
Get some help creating a Travel Light Plan to crash through the barriers.
In the midst of doing this, you will be confronted with Question 3…. The rubber hits the road.
Q3: What are you willing to do to get there?
Why does it always come to this?! The battle rages between our old nature and what God wants for us. I have come to the conclusion that we don’t believe God has our best interests in mind. God’s “strategy” just doesn’t make sense to us and we can’t imagine life without things we have become so accustomed to. I remember many hard talks with people wanting to get out of debt who were unwilling to cut cable TV @ $150/mo for a couple years to do it. “We could never go without TV!” Too painful…
This may be a bit hard to swallow, but this quote captures the tension:
“Many think that “dying to themselves” is what causes them so much pain. But it is actually part of them that still lives that causes the problem. Death is only painful when you resist it.”
Francois Fenelon (17th century monk)
Ironically, great freedom comes when we drop our resistance and release things: Material possessions, relational hurts, and perhaps greatest of all, worldly expectations. Remember the story of the Rich Young Ruler who desired eternal life? Jesus challenged him, in essence asking, “Do you love God more than everything else?” He walked away with his head down. Not that Jesus will ask you to sell everything, but he challenges us to release anything that has become a barrier to pursuing the vision God has for our lives.
As Fenelon says, avoid the pain by letting go quickly, without resisting.
Perhaps it’s time start asking these questions while “the fuse is still burning”. This is your life. Need help developing a Travel Light Plan? You might be surprised; most people are closer to living out God’s vision for their lives than they think. Let’s talk.
Go to www.bobblackcoaching.com to schedule a free consultation.