Just do the next right thing. These words were spoken to me by a coworker once. She had heard them in a sermon. It sounds so simple, but is it really? Should it be easy? What does it say about a person if it’s not easy for them?
Just do the next right thing. The phrase came back to me recently and it has me pondering. Why do people find it so hard to do the next right thing? Mind you, I am not just throwing that out about people in general; I include myself in that question. Maybe it’s because we aren’t sure what the next right thing is. Or maybe it’s because we are overwhelmed about what it might take.
Sometimes it’s easy. We know the right thing and we know that we can’t not do it. Someone is hurt and needs help. Finding a wallet with a wad of cash in it, but also with identification of the true owner. Often we don’t have to think because the next right thing is innate. We just do it.
But what about those situations where there isn’t a right or wrong, just a choice? What about those situations where not doing it something terrible isn’t going to happen? These are the ones that I struggle with. Is the next right thing to sell my house and move? Is it to apply for that job that caught my eye?
And then there are the opportunities where the next right thing is going to be hard or take us out of our comfort zone. Fear can get in the way of doing the next right thing. It can hold us back and keep us from fulfilling the things we were destined to do. Fear can thwart our desires to move beyond our current life.
Earlier this week I wrote about Katie in Uganda. Katie is doing the next right thing every day. I don’t know Katie personally so I don’t know this, but from reading her blog I suspect she doesn’t question she just does. She knows what the next right thing is and she moves forward. I would love to sit down with Katie and talk to her over a cup of coffee. Does she fear? Does she waiver in her resolve to help? Does it come easier the more she does that next right thing?
Katie’s story got me thinking about my own life. I have known for some time that God has called me to the fight against Lewy Body Dementia (LBD). Before my Mom died I felt God also calling me to love and support the people who are care givers for loved ones with LBD and other forms of dementia. During the last years of Mom’s life I saw firsthand the toll that exacts itself on care givers. I watched as Dad gave his all to take care of her despite the weariness he experienced. I saw Dad keep doing the next right thing. I tried to share the responsibility with Dad so he could refresh and reenergize. As I did this I realized how many people are struggling to give the care that is needed and I felt the desire to help lighten that load.
For two years I have suspected that I should do something about this, but fear has held me back. What if I can’t do it? Will I have the strength that is needed? Will I have the time? It keeps coming back to me, this next right thing. I can hide from it for a while but then along comes a thing as simple as a blog by a young girl in Africa and then there is no place to hide. So, this week I did the next right thing. I signed up for the support group facilitator training offered by the Lewy Body Dementia Association. I submitted my information to the coordinator so she can post it on the web site. I don’t know what the next right thing is, but I am going to finish the tasks related to the training and then I will have an idea. I don’t need to know all the answers right now. I will just do this right thing and then do the next right thing.