When a crisis hits, life-altering decisions sometimes have to be made within seconds. The current COVID-19 crisis placed me in such a quandary. When news first broke from China, I did not want to alarm my staff, since, at that time, there were no documented cases in the United States. However, I immediately purchased more hand sanitizers and liberally distributed them around the office and encouraged all to make frequent use of this agent. This action coincided with the start of the flu season so I reasoned it was prudent to take extra precautions. There was a bit of a push back from the staff as some thought I was acting hastily. A few weeks later when the number of COVID-19 cases was growing and the crisis was declared a pandemic, the staff realized how important it was to now have the hand sanitizers, but I was now faced with another problem. The hoarding of key supplies had begun and, as everyone now knows, hand sanitizers, disinfectant wipes, paper towels, and toilet paper were in short supply. Although we had enough supplies to last at least a month, I found it difficult to resist the urge to join the crowd mentality and also hoard supplies. With time, some degree of sanity in the marketplace has returned and the supply chains are slowly being replenished. However, I still fret over the situation as I observe others and battle the urge to take things in my own hands to demonstrate decisive action.
He waited seven days, the time appointed by Samuel. But Samuel did not come to Gilgal, and the people were scattering from him. So Saul said, “Bring the burnt offering here to me, and the peace offerings.” And he offered the burnt offering. As soon as he had finished offering the burnt offering, behold, Samuel came. And Saul went out to meet him and greet him.
1 Samuel 13:8-10 (ESV)
“Him” is the prophet Samuel whom God used to anoint Saul as King of Israel. Only a prophet or a priest was allowed to offer a sacrifice to God. Saul was unwilling to wait on God’s command and took matters into his own hands, completely defying God. Saul was punished by God who stripped His kingdom from him and bestowed it upon his successor, David. I often feel as if I am in Saul’s place. When chaos is swirling around me, I must resist the urge to do something and follow the actions of others who are panicking. If I do not, I feel as though I am going one step forward and two steps backward. And yet at other times, I am reluctant to act too quickly lest I make a hasty decision and alarm others. What hope do I have to make the right decision?
Commit your work to the LORD, and your plans will be established.
Proverbs 16:3 (ESV)
Only by continually surrendering our will to God and committing our work to Him, will our decisions be in line with God’s perfect sovereign will and providence. If we do this when a crisis occurs, we can remain confident that God is leading us and we are not following the crowd.
Love and trust the Lord; seek His will in your life.