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  • Writer's pictureJohn Whitehead

Action or Reaction

There are times in life when many of us consider ourselves to be independent thinkers. When we do, we are confident our responses to life’s situations and circumstances are born out of our knowledge, experience, and insight.

Believing this can give us the mindset of being action-oriented people.

When I think of myself in this way, I have come to realize, there are times my responses or actions are not born out of my knowledge, experience, and insight. Instead, they are a reaction to an external situation or circumstance.

In fact, in most cases, every “action or reaction” has been fueled by outside influences.

For someone who considers themselves independent, this can be most disconcerting. Yet, if I am honest, I cannot deny this truth.


It is because of the constant exposure to the world around us. You see, no matter how independent we think we are, the views and opinions of others on a myriad of ideas, ideologies, and perspectives can sway our “action or reaction”.

The power these views and opinions can have on us is extraordinary. To the point we can be manipulated to act or react in a way that moves us in a certain direction while convincing us this is the direction we wanted to go all along.

The power found in being able to cause an “action or reaction” in people is used to change culture, the policies of our governments, our churches, and our businesses.

This should cause us to think carefully. These ideas and thoughts, which are not our own, are moved forward not only with our cooperation, but with our consent.

What can be done about this sinister and insidious method of manipulation we are exposed to daily? It starts with being aware of our “action or reaction” and asking a simple question; why am I reacting the way I am reacting and why are my actions different than I want them to be?

Taking the time to ask these questions can change our “action or reaction” by not allowing our passion to get ahead of our purpose.

I will close with this. Your “action or reaction” is yours. But it is highly possible, the reason for it may not be.

We need to know the difference before the difference we make cannot be undone!

Colossians 3:17, "Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father.

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