The law of requisite variety

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By Dave Henning / September 20, 2020

“According to the law of requisite variety, the survival of any system depends on its capacity to cultivate variety in its internal structures.  Disequilibrium is life.  Equilibrium is death.  Prolonged equilibrium dulls our senses, numbs our minds, and atrophies our muscles.”- Mark Batterson

“Then the LORD asked him, ‘What is that in your hand?’  ‘A shepherd’s staff,’ Moses replied.  ‘Throw it on the ground,’ the LORD told him.  So Moses threw down the staff, and it turned into a snake.  Moses jumped back.” – Exodus 4:2-3 (NLT)

Mark Batterson concludes Chapter 3 of Wild Goose Chase as he states that God gave Moses one more curious command shortly after asking him to remove his sandals.  Next, God told Moses to throw down his staff.

Pastor Batterson describes a shepherd’s staff as a six-foot long wooden rod – curved on one end.  Furthermore, the staff functioned as a walking stick, weapon, and a prod used to guide the flock.  Like an American Express card, Moses never left the tent without it.  Because that staff symbolized his security.  Also, it formed part of his identity.

Hence, when Moses questioned why God chose him to lead Israel out of Egypt, God answered Moses’ question by changing the focus.  In essence, God told Moses the issue involved Whose he was, not who he was.

But, it’s hard to throw something down – something that defines your security or identity.  It feels like you’re putting your future in jeopardy.  Yet, in the process you discover your true identity in Christ.  To find that true identity, you must throw down the human securities you cling to.

Finally, Mark provides this reminder:

“Your success isn’t contingent upon what’s in your hand.  Your success is contingent upon whether God extends His mighty hand on your behalf.  So let me issue a challenge.  Throw down your staff, come out of the cage, and discover the adventure on the far side of routine.”

Today’s question:  What Bible verses help you apply the law of requisite variety?  Please share.

Tomorrow’s blog: “Spiritual inversion – God in our image”

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Dave Henning

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