March Madness and Decision-Making

March Madness

So as I write this, it is the day before the wildest tournament of college sports officially gets under way. Yep, I am referencing the NCAA tournament. Every year there is always so much to do about who gets in the tournament, and then who will advance, and eventually take home the grand prize, the National Championship. I used to be someone who followed college basketball closely, as I was born in Ann Arbor and grew up a Michigan Wolverines fan.  (Shout out to the Fab Five) Those were fun days. Now as I approach the NCAA tournament every year, I feel like the kid who is too late to the party to find a dance partner. I’m feeling pretty left out. So I try to get in on the fun one way or another.

So despite my disinterest all year, I create interest and momentum in the days before the tourney begins. It is hard to build a bracket, making predictions for who will win each round, with little or no prior knowledge. But it is not impossible. I used to find a random bracket of some sports guy online and just pick as he does, and wish for the best. However, I am finding that it is much better to take a different approach which I think is the approach that we should all take when it comes to many decisions.

What I now do is seek out as many wise voices as I can find. I look on ESPN and find what the top dogs there are saying. I look on Bleacher Report and see what their analysts say. I listen to some sports podcasters that have had success in the past with predictions. I will read a few newspaper articles from sports columnists, and I will seek the counsel of a couple of trusted friends who love NCAA. What this does is gives me much more data to go off of when I make my selections. I am not putting all my cards into one persons hands and saying I’ll just do as you say. The Bible agrees with this approach I have discovered.

“For lack of guidance a nation falls, but victory is won through many advisers.” Proverbs 11:14 NIV

“So don’t go to war without wise guidance; victory depends on having many advisers.” Proverbs 24:6 NLT

So let’s take counsel from the wisest man ever, Solomon, and seek out as many advisors as possible. As we go into decisions, seeking God’s wisdom should not be something that we do in isolation. So many times God’s truth will not be revealed to us in our own personal time with Him, but in conversations with other Godly advisors. One of the best benefits of being connected to a local church is that you are surrounded by at least a handful of quality advisors. I would almost bank on there being at least a few people in your local church that you could go to for sound advice that lines up with the scripture. If not, take it from me, this might be time to look for another church. If you can’t turn to anyone in a time of need to give you a word of truth, you need to find a place where you have that ability. For me, that is key to being a part of a church. We need to be able to strengthen and sharpen one another.

“So encourage each other and build each other up, just as you are already doing.” 1 Thessalonians 5:11 NLT

So, whatever decisions you are facing today, whatever difficult crossroads you find yourself at, determine now that you will not face them alone. You should definitely make the decision that you determine is the right one as God is leading, but give God as many opportunities to speak into your decision as possible. Don’t limit Him to only speaking to you through your prayers and scripture. The voices of those Godly advisors around you can be some of the most helpful in discerning the direction God has for you.

So I don’t think that I have built the Warren Buffet Billion dollar prize bracket, but I think I’ve got a shot. My selections are a combination of heart, head, and advice, which I think should be the result of all of our choices in life 🙂

I won’t share all of my picks, but here are some:

Elite 8:
Florida  – Kansas
MSU – Iowa St.
Arizona – Creighton
Louisville – Michigan

Final Four:
Florida – MSU
Arizona – Louisville

National Championship:
Florida – Lousiville

Winner:
Florida

 

What is your decision-making process usually like? What are your picks for the tourney? Any of mine you take big issues with?

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