Decision Filters

Yesterday I mentioned that the Storyline process has helped me create a decision filter so that I can respond appropriately to opportunities. I'd like to talk a little more about that.

One of the key elements of Storyline is identifying your primary life roles (mine were Husband, Father, Creative, and Business Owner) and then clarifying your ambitions for each of those roles. Once you know what you'd like to do in each of those roles - once you know where you're headed - it's much easier to determine whether a given project, task, or opportunity will lead you toward those ends or away from them.

About a year and a half ago, I made the first of what would eventually add up to over 40 videos for Epic Church (you can see many of them here). It is hard for me to believe that it has only been a year and a half because of the immense amount I have learned in that time. It has been a wonderful way to get my hands dirty in video production and I've had a blast - Caitlin can verify that I have spontaneously danced on multiple occasions out of excitement over what I learned or figured out for a given project. I've done studio shoots, event coverage, and even traveled to Ecuador, and I can't say enough about how much the experience has taught me, so I'll have to just leave it at that.

I say all this to frame how difficult it was for me to bring this chapter to a close.

You see, the time came when I realized that my work in this area was no longer leading me forward, and in fact was holding me back in many areas of my life. The projects were severely cutting into family time (Husband and Father roles), preventing me from pursuing other creative projects (Creative role), and costing more than I could afford to spend (Business Owner role). After a lot of discussion with people I trust, one or two false starts, and some-but-probably-not-enough prayer, I finally realized it was time to promote a change in this area of my life. I realized it may mean an end to my production of videos for Epic, and I came to feel at peace about it. Caitlin and I ended up meeting with the senior leadership of the church and discussing the issue for a couple of hours. We came out of that meeting with a significant sense of relief and peace, knowing that everyone was on the same page and that I could move forward with other creative endeavors.

When you know where you're going, you need not fear change.

Never be afraid to move your story toward a climactic scene. If you realize that some part (even a good part) of your life is not leading you in the right direction, prayerfully consider whether it is time to let go and move on. It may not be - conflict is an essential part of the growing process - but maybe, just maybe you will find yourself relieved or even refreshed to bring a good thing to an end.