Follow Your Heart! But On The Other Hand...? [PENDULUM POST]

I'm learning to discern more. You'd think I'd be better at it by now, but it turns out I'm still learning. For me, following my heart means having the "courage" to call things out when I see them. I have the compulsion to set things right. I feel culpable to say what I see, especially as a leader. I almost always feel I am missing the mark if I don't say something when I hear or see something out of line.

(Feels kind of judgy when I say it like that... maybe because it sometimes is judgy and that's where the Pendulum Process needs to come in!)

Is it always right to say something?

Is it never right to step in?

Sometimes it is "courage" that is needed and I do indeed need to speak up. After all, Proverbs 9:8b says,

"... But correct the wise, and they will love you."

 Yet, at other times we are encouraged to be wise by not speaking up. Proverbs 10:19b says,

"...if you are wise, you will keep quiet."

So what's a gal to do?  Let's take a look at the Pendulum process.

The Pendulum process helps people discern what to do in any given situation. Just like the pendulum on a grandfather clock swings back and forth keeping time, there are different times for different responses in our lives. If the pendulum keeps swinging it is a sign of a working clock, and in a person's life, it is a sign of being discerning. If the pendulum goes over the edge and gets stuck it is broken, and if a person gets stuck on a certain response every single time, they have stopped discerning. Choosing the outside of the pendulum is not a healthy place to be.

Think of a situation where you may need discernment and let's walk it through this pathway together. (And then share your pendulum with me when you work it out?)

There are 3 steps in using the Pendulum Process. 

#1 - Decipher both sides of a situation.

It's easy to see the option that comes first to your heart as the only right thing to do, but there is almost always an equally right alternative. Naming that other side, and understanding its value is a circumspect, mature, and discerning way to make better decisions.

In the case above the two sides could be to speak up or not to speak up when you see something out of sorts. To share in truth or to have grace.

Another example could be to move out in faith when you have an interest in something (or someone) or to wait in rest for the right timing. To move in action or wait in active patience.

#2 - Define the edges.

On the outside of the pendulum are the unhealthy edges. They are usually built with absolutes that include the words "always" or "never". 

Is the first scenario that would sound like, "I should always say what I see, it would be negligent if I didn't", or "I should never stick my nose in other people's business, their life is their life. What they do is between them and God." At first blush, both of these statements could be true and even good. It's those words, "always" and "never" that mess things up. 

Having hard and fast rules about behavior when both sides could be good keeps us from walking in a discerning posture with the Lord.

In the second case, the outsides of the pendulum might be "Faith always requires risk. If I thought of it I must step out and do it" or on the other side, "If it is meant to be it will come to me, it's always right to wait, isn't that what trust is all about?"

#3 Discern the time.

In the end, discerning "what time it is" for the situation we are facing is what our faith journey is all about! This is the great adventure. God designed us to have a personal relationship with Him! He didn't just leave us with a bunch of rules to follow, rather, He wants us to walk out our faith in a discerning way, learning to interact with His Spirit in our everyday lives.

Should I say something or let it go? God will help me discern. He will likely work in my heart first and if I am to say something it should come from a heart of care, not a place of judgment.

Should you take the first step or wait patiently? God will help you discern. He will likely work in your heart first and give you the courage to move forward or peace to rest in the waiting.

Whatever He leads you to, it will be for your good and for the good of those around you!

Don't just follow your heart! Take your heart to the Lord and follow His guidance!

We use pendulums all the time at Bridges Coaching. To learn more check out our website and especially our product pageGood Coaching helps you discern your next steps. We can help!

P.S. I've been working on this Pendulum Process for years now and am hoping to write a book about it. Would you be interested in hearing more?



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