The only thing that’s fun about the word conundrum is saying it. Otherwise, it’s a “confusing and difficult problem or question”—the kind leaders face every week. But God’s got a cure.

We recently said farewell to a long-term board member at a special dinner. One member expressed his appreciation by saying, “When I come to our meetings, I’m all hyped up from the day’s work. I try to set that aside, but I’m always grateful when you sit down beside me, Karen. You exude peace, and I try to steal some of that from you.” We all laughed, but we knew what he meant. Karen does exude peace, and she’s a woman of prayer.

There’s a quiet calm that accompanies a person anchored in God. And it’s the best posture for dealing with ministry difficulties.

“Step out of the traffic! Take a long,
    loving look at me, your High God.”

Psalm 46:10 (MSG)

Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers,

letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness,

everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down.

Philippians 4:6-7 (MSG)

Natural Human Response to a Conundrum:

1. Panic.

2. Worry.

3. Brainstorming.

4. Frenetic activity.

5. (Or for some of us) Frozen in fear.

Godly Response to a Conundrum:

1. Pause. As the leader, take time to get your bearings and get God’s input on how He wants you to walk with Him through this challenge.

2. Wait on God. For me, this usually involves meeting with my leadership team. But instead of charging into spirited conversation, we settle into God’s presence through worship, Scripture, and being still.

3. Spirit-storm. This is a term we coined to replace brainstorming. Since we greatly value God’s wisdom over our own brain power, we spend plenty of time talking and listening to Him through prayer – mulling over the problem and discerning God’s pathway through it.

4. Take measured, Spirit-prompted steps. Conundrums, by their very nature, are complicated. It’s important to take the next step according to God’s leading, and to check in with Him along the way for course corrections.

5. Move forward in peace and boldness. I don’t know that I’ll ever stop being amazed at God’s storm-calming ability—especially the ones within our own hearts. Time and again, when we’re stranded in high seas, God not only leads us out, but gives us remarkable peace, joy, and confidence in the midst.

Conundrums in leadership are a given. But so are God’s presence, perspective, and peace. When you’re in a conundrum, gather a few associates, hunker down with God, and then follow His leading straight through it.

“When you’re in a conundrum, gather a few associates, hunker down with God, and then follow His leading straight through it.”

- Lisa Hosler

In the Comment Section below, share about a challenging situation God led you and your team through.

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