- Virginia Brown
Avoiding Analysis Paralysis
Have you ever met someone (or maybe you yourself struggle with this) who suffers from “analysis paralysis?” This concept entails overthinking a situation to the point that deciding an outcome becomes impossible. It entails incapacitating fear regarding making the wrong decision, so no decision is made, with much of the fear resulting from the uncertainty of the future. Does the Bible offer us any help in dealing with analysis paralysis? It does.
The Word of God says this to us in Eccl 11:6:
“In the morning sow your seed, and at evening withhold not your hand, for you do not know which will prosper, this or that, or whether both alike will be good.”
Commenting on a person’s morning and evening labors, Solomon observes that no one knows whether the morning effort or the evening effort or both efforts will yield a positive outcome. Maybe both attempts will fail. Who knows? The point Solomon is making is this: the future is uncertain. We know that by observation and by the Word of God. Only God knows the future.
Should this lack of understanding about the future—and the fears that come with the uncertainty—lead us to do nothing? No. Solomon commands us, even when we don’t know what will happen, to “sow your seed and . . . withhold not your hand.” In other words, work. Labor. Get after it. Make a decision, maybe even two. There might be situations in your life, dear friend, where you need to make a decision. You might be in analysis paralysis. What would God have you do? Don’t allow the uncertainty of the future (and the fear that comes from that) prevent you from acting. Take a step of faith and make the decision for the glory of God.