Stone Soup for Five: When your pros and cons list comes out even...

When your pros and cons list comes out even...

Quite a while ago I was in a dilemma.  I did what I usually do in such a case and wrote out a pros and cons list in my bullet journal.  I listed 5 really good thoughts on the "cons" side, and 4 really good thoughts on the "pros" side, but I still couldn't make a decision.  So I handed the list to my husband and asked him to write down his pros and cons.  He added one thought-- to the "pros" side, making the lists completely even.

And the decision still had to be made.

We had been praying over this decision for quite some time.  We sought advice from people we knew loved the Lord and who we trusted, and the outcome still was mixed.  As I was praying over this list, yet again, I had a passing thought...

What would the Puritans have said in a similar situation? What would they have asked themselves?  I had a feeling it wouldn't be should they or shouldn't they... it would be completely different questions.  The Puritans knew the biggest sin problem we have is pride and everything stems from that.  Their questions always sought to get to the root of pride or sin.  They'd ask questions like:

Is any of this because of my own pride?

Which decision would require me to humble myself more?

Which will place this more into God's hands and less in mine?

Which would allow me to trust Christ more?

Which would display God better?  

Which would bring the most glory to God?

Which will allow me to experience a tiny fraction of Christ's suffering?

The key to remember (that the Puritans--and any man or woman of God knew well) is that pride is pretty much the root of all sin.  And, this whole world (and our own heart) is deceitful.  We are surrounded by lies and filled with pride.  Doing a pros and cons list is a good thing, but it doesn't always get to the true root of sin or expose lies.

Those questions changed everything and after working through them, the answer was obvious (though not easy), but we could go into the decision with His strength.  Do you have a near impossible situation that you might need to run through these questions?


  1. I just was convicted yesterday that my holding on to resentment is me believing that I deserve to be treated better than that, an issue of pride. Thank you for the list of questions
    I believe they will be very helpful.

    1. So true! Pride really is the root of all sins, isn't it?

  2. I really appreciated this, Kari. Thanks for sharing it with all of us. I am finding the Puritans an often neglected well of wisdom.

    1. I absolutely love Puritan wisdom. They not only "got it" but worked it into every aspect of their lives.

  3. Such good questions to ask before
    any decisions. Thank you for sharing.
    Brenda West

  4. WOW,!!!!!!!! What good questions. I have a few things to run this list thru. I'm going to use the list anytime I have something on my heart and need to make sure it's God I'm hearing from. Thank you got sharing this, a growing tool that will help me in everything I do.

    1. Thank you! I hope it helps you like it did me!

  5. Thank you for sharing the blessing of learned wisdom :) I will be pondering these as I assess my current job situation!

  6. Thank you for sharing this! I just made a pro's and con's list yesterday about a big decision that my husband and I are trying to make. While the con's outweighed the pro's by a lot I am going to pray over these questions with my husband and see if this is truly what God is saying or is it more of our sinful nature speaking.

  7. These are so helpful for SO many situations! Thank you!


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