Accidental vs. Intentional


Are you living in an accidental or intentional way? There's a subtle but important difference!

Accidental and Intentional—a major dividing line by which we live.

First, let’s define accidental. These are events in our lives that “just happen.” We don’t really plan them, anticipate them or allow for them; they seemingly just occur.

“I had no idea that was gojng to take so long. What I planned on taking a half hour ended up taking all morning.”

“Yeah man, I've been meaning to call you back, but ya know, my schedule has just been crazy.”

“Was that today? I am so sorry I missed that. I guess it just slipped my mind.”

“Lord, sorry, it’s been a couple weeks since I’ve prayed, but this problem that just came up, well, I really need help.”

“I know things haven’t been right in a long time, but I’m just not sure what to do.”

“I didn’t plan on her being there. It just happened.”

Did you notice the shift in severity? Yet, all of these examples are apparently accidental in nature.

Now, let’s flip to intentional—meaning a planned, targeted, purposeful effort.

“Wow, that was hard work, but I’m so glad it’s finally done. I’ve been needing to do that for a long time.”

“Hey, was thinking about you today and just thought I’d see how things were going.”

“I’d love to talk more, but I have to be somewhere in half an hour.”

“God, this is one of those days where I don’t feel much like praying, so that probably means I need to push through and get honest with you.”

“Hey, I think we need to talk and get some things right.”

“I don’t mean to be rude, but I’m going to get on home now.”

No shift here—all the proactive language of a leader.

So here’s the question today: how much of our lives are accidental? Allowing life, stuff, things, events, people to just happen? Not taking charge, not moving in health, just being a victim of circumstances? When we do this, is it laziness? Apathy? Feeling overwhelmed? Fear? Those are lousy motivators, aren’t they?

The things we just let happen too often come back to bite us and end up taking more time and energy than if we'd dealt with them head on.

Intentional living may appear to be harder, taking more energy, but in the end makes us live stronger and sleep better. Listen to Jesus’ invitation for us to be pro-active, intentional men…

Ask, and you will receive. Search, and you will find. Knock, and the door will be opened for you. Everyone who asks will receive. Everyone who searches will find. And the door will be opened for everyone who knocks. —Matthew 7:7-8 CEV

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