The Two Most Important Questions You Will Ever Ask
Have you ever heard this statement? “There’s no such thing as a stupid question. The only stupid question is the one that isn’t asked.” I suppose that in theory that statement has validity, but it says nothing about how “stupid” one may feel for asking a particular question.
Humor aside, the importance of asking questions cannot be understated. They are what transform static thinking into critical thinking. Questions open up doors of opportunity, reveal motives, foster fertile ground for innovation, and sometimes are asked as a result of an epiphany that has occurred in life.
The Foundation for Critical Thinking in an article entitled, “The Roles of Questions in Teaching: Thinking and Learning”, asserts that, “thinking is not driven by answers, but by questions.” They contend that every single field of study that has survived the test of time and scrutiny began with questions or the field would never have been developed at all. All major breakthroughs in an industry or genre of life have come as a result of someone displaying the courage to ask questions. Therefore, they conclude that when the questions stop, the learning has come to an end and only those who are asking questions are the ones engaged in the process of thinking and learning.
Without a doubt, questions have tremendous significance in the arena of discovery and evolution, but I think even more important at times is not the questions themselves, but knowing the right question and seeing those questions as key to finding out the purpose for your existence.
In the bible, Acts chapter 9 records the story of the conversion of a man named Saul who later became known as Paul, and how one serendipitous moment in his life produced what I believe to be the two most important questions that anyone could ever ask.
Question #1 – Who are you Lord?
Saul had just received permission from the high priest to go to the city of Damascus and jail men and women who were Christians without question. On his way there a bright light from heaven knocked him down and he asked, “Who are you Lord?” The question Saul asked gives us an insider’s view of the process that was ongoing in his heart. His question forces us to ask the question, “How did he know he was “Lord?”
From a purely practical, non-deep and non-spiritual standpoint, it wasn’t an unnatural reaction. A burst of blinding light from the heavens suspends your ability to view the natural world around you; the logical conclusion is that whoever is responsible has a high level of authority.
Jesus’ response to him is astonishing. He said, “I am Jesus whom you are persecuting. It is hard for you to kick against the goads.” History relates to us that goads are sharp instruments used to spur or guide livestock. Oftentimes the livestock would kick against the goad causing self-injury and would soon learn that “kicking against the goads” was an exercise in futility. Paul had been kicking because God had already been dealing with him, his efforts to resist had reached futility, and he had come to a point of surrender. When did the kicking begin?
If you take a peek at the final verses of Acts 7 you will the find the ultimate demise of a Christian proselyte by the name of Stephen. After preaching a compelling message to Jewish leadership, the response was quite startling: they stoned him to death. At the feet of his stoning, consenting to his death was Saul. It is possible that the words that escaped from the lips of Stephen as life left his body, “Lord do not charge them with this sin” began Saul’s “kicking against the goads.”
Are you kicking against the goads?
Question #2 – What do you want me to do?
After God places us in a position to ask who He is, he then places a desire in our hearts to discover who we are, what he wants us to do, and what is our purpose and mission in life. Apart from purpose, life is meaningless. One can “mean well” and still lack meaning. It is a question that expresses a desire to serve God and serve people.
The two most important questions you will ever ask are waiting for you to open up the doors of limitless possibilities and change your life forever!