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Why We Need to Make Tough Decisions


for the curious about life and leading others

Why We Need to Make Tough Decisions

Jared Kirkwood

After 11 years on staff in Student Ministries at Mariners Church, my wife and I have decided it is time to leave. This has been the hardest year of our life, but through all the pain I wouldn’t have traded it for the world.

Making tough decisions forces us to reflect on our identity, explore what makes us unique, and be open to the possibility of the next assignment coming our way. Through all the sleepless nights, desperate prayers, and tearful conversations, I have learned this one thing: the journey of making a tough decisions is often times more meaningful than the result of the choice. 

Your identity is secure. You are a son, daughter, father, mother, friend. If you have a faith connection, you are forgiven, rescued, you are the beloved of the King. Its important to remember what remains in tact when it feels like the sky is falling. Who you are and the character you have built are not going anywhere unless you want them to.

You are unique. You have likes and dislikes. Preferences. You also have interests, hobbies, talents, passions, things that wake you up in the morning and keep you awake late at night. You are a collection of things that differentiate you from everyone else. Exploring these things while making tough decisions open up opportunities you didn’t know you had and unlock potential you may not have known was there.

What’s your next assignment? For over a decade I was a youth pastor, and I loved the job. But this past year was a painful journey of drilling deep into to my heart to see what the next assignment was. Culture will condition us to avoid pain, to skirt conflict, but tough decisions done well take us on a transformational adventure that grows our character and unearths possibility. 

What tough decision are you making right now? Consider writing down all the components of your identity, the collection of things that make you unique, and then listen to see what assignment could be coming your way. Though tough decisions may be painful, the journey will reveal who you truly are in the face of adversity.