Before You Commit, How Do You Count the Cost?
“It is foolish and rash to make a promise to the Lord before counting the cost.” (Proverbs 20:25 TLB)
When you have a major decision to make, the Bible says you need to count the cost: “It is foolish and rash to make a promise to the Lord before counting the cost” (Proverbs 20:25 TLB).
Every decision has a price tag. You have to ask yourself what your decision will cost in four areas: time, money, energy, and relationships.
I am basically giving you permission to tell people, “I’ll get back to you.” It’s OK to ponder and count the cost. Don’t be pressured, because there is a law of life that Proverbs and Ecclesiastes teach: It’s always easier to get in than get out.
It’s easier to get in debt than out of debt. It’s easier to get into a relationship than out of a relationship. It’s easier to fill your schedule than fulfill your schedule. It’s always easier to get in than get out.
Luke 14:28-29 says, “If you want to build a tower, you first sit down and decide how much it will cost, to see if you have enough money to finish the job. If you don’t, you might lay the foundation, but you would not be able to finish. Then all who would see it would make fun of you” (NCV).
Before I started Saddleback Church I had to count the cost to me in terms of time, money, energy, and my family.
The first year budget of Saddleback Church that included all staff salaries was $60,000. I knew that there would be sacrifices that had to be made in the startup, and I had to ask myself, “Is it worth it?” Oh, yeah — it’s worth it! Knowing that thousands of people are going to be in Heaven for eternity through the ministry of Saddleback Church makes it all worth it.
So here’s the question you need to ask when you’re making a major decision: Is it worth it? Count the cost before you commit.
Talk It Over
- Why do you think it’s important to count the cost of a decision in terms of your energy?
- In what decision do you need to tell others, “Let me think about it”? How do you think they will respond?
- What makes a decision that will cost you a great deal of money, time, and energy worth it?
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