Why I Don’t Always Give People an Answer—Even When They Come to Me for Answers

I have a theory I practice often.

I’ve been using it for many years—as a leader, father, a friend and a pastor. It’s not always what people come looking to me for, but I think it’s the best practice.

I don’t always give people answers.

• As a pastor, people come to me for answers.

• As a dad, my boys come to me for answers.

• As a friend, people come to me for answers.

• As a leader of a team, people come to me for answers.

In any case, I don’t always give people answers.

I don’t try to solve their problems for them.

I know that seems hard to understand—maybe even cruel of me.

Now, if there is a clear biblical answer for their problem or issue, I give it to them—as I understand it. I’m talking about the issues more difficult to discern. Things such as career choice decisions, the calling in life decisions, who to marry, how to respond to a marriage conflict, etc.—the unwritten answer type decisions.

For those type of issues, I probably have an opinion, but I almost never “have” the answer.

Instead …

I help people discover a paradigm through which to make the decision.

• I become an objective listener.

• I help them see all sides of the issue.

• I share Scriptures that may speak to both sides of the decision.

• I serve as an outside voice.

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Ron Edmondson
Ron Edmondson is a pastor and church leader passionate about planting churches, helping established churches thrive, and assisting pastors and those in ministry think through leadership, strategy and life. Ron has over 20 years business experience, mostly as a self-employed business owner, and he's been helping churches grow vocationally for over 10 years.

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