Start With What You Know

I have the privilege of reading a free advance copy of “Finding God’s Life for My Will: His Presence is the Plan” by Tenth Avenue North’s lead singer, Mike Donehey, thanks to his launch team at WaterBrook & Multnomah. Towards the end of chapter one, he says something so simple yet profound, “I went with what I knew instead of letting what I didn’t know paralyze me.”

Out of the 40 pages I have read thus far, that quote is the only thing I have underlined because I recognize its importance. I recognized that it is the opposite of how I live my life. Maybe it’s the opposite of how you live yours.

I don’t know about you, but for me, I am at times scared by uncertainty. My thoughts betray me and doubt trickles in as I start something new or think about doing something and realize how little I actually know about it. We can get so bogged down by thinking we need to know everything before we start but what if we just started with what we do know?

We all have things that we know for certain. I know that things will work out because everything is figure-outable. I know that I don’t need to know everything because I am a learner and I can learn what I don’t know. I know that, thanks to Mel Robbins, if I have a problem that can be solved with action, then I don’t have a problem.

So now I must ask myself, if I know these things, why do I stop myself when faced with a new challenge? If I know I can figure it out, that I have the capacity to learn, and taking action will move me past this present moment, why do I hesitate and doubt?

I think the answer comes down to fear and lack of trust. We forget that we are not going to know it all and fear looking like we don’t have all the answers. We don’t trust that the universe/god/whatever you believe in knows what’s up.

Perhaps it is too that we put more weight on what we don’t know and feel that what we do know doesn’t matter because we will be judged by what we don’t know so our minds focus on that one thing. I’m not sure because I don’t have all the answers.

But what I do now know is, when facing uncertainty, start with what I know and the rest will come as it comes.


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