Lance Armstrong and The Principle of the Path

I started discussing The Principle of the Path last week before Lance Armstrong hit the news. But actually, Lance Armstrong is a great example for this discussion. lance armstrong

The Principle of the Path is a book by Andy Stanley.

The Principle of the Path is this: Direction, not intention, determines our destination. It doesn’t matter how much you want to go to Florida. If you are driving north out of Chicago, it’s not going to happen.

We Need A New Direction, Not a Solution

In chapter two of The Principle of the Path, Andy makes an interesting point: we often don’t need a solution. We need a new direction. For example, if I find myself in Green Bay after driving two hours north of Chicago, I don’t need a solution. There is no solution. There is no quick fix. What I need is a new direction. I’ve got to admit that I’ve wasted four hours, turn around, and get on the road to Florida.

Lance Armstrong Doesn’t Need a Solution

This is where Lance Armstrong might heed Andy’s advice. Lance doesn’t need a solution right now. Nothing will fix what he broke. He might think that making an apology will at least buy him back the right to compete in future sporting events. But if he looks at his apology as a solution he’s sadly mistaken. What people want to see is a new direction. They want to see that month after month and year after year he follows a new path. Then, and only then, might they decide to grant him the right to compete again.

The Mistake of Apologies

This is where offenders often go wrong. They come clean and confess. That is SO HUGE to them they think they’ve done something radical. Something noble. They think they’ve found a solution to their problem. They want the world to applaud them and allow them to continue on. But that’s only the beginning, not the end.

What people do after the apology tells us what we want to know: will they follow a new path? Have they found the right direction? Will they stay the course? Only time will tell if Lance Armstrong sets a new course and follows it as closely as he followed his bike tour routes.

Are You Looking for a Solution or a New Direction?

What about you? Maybe you are in a jam right now. You realize that you’ve blown it. Are your scrambling for a solution? Desperate for THE answer? Consider a new direction.

New Direction + Time = A Better Place

Question: Can you relate to this distinction between solution and direction? Have you wasted time looking for a solution when what you needed was to start moving in a new direction? Take a second and tell me about it below.

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2 thoughts on “Lance Armstrong and The Principle of the Path

  1. anonymous

    Thanks for the clarification between solution vs new direction. Your posts on Lance Armstrong and making apologies are very painful for me to read because I have been recently in a situation where I messed up. I tried to make amends and apologize but I am not certain if I did it the right way. I am too ashamed to go into details here, but I am trying to now find a new direction and be a better person.

    1. F. Remy Diederich Post author

      Two things to keep in mind here. One, even if you totally lost trust with the other person, God still loves you and offers you a chance to rebuild your life. People may give up on you, but God doesn’t. Second,there are right ways and wrong ways to restore a relationship. STUCK will give you some practical steps for the right way. You can also find a lot of the same information here on the blog. Don’t give up, and don’t beat yourself up. God wants to help you reclaim your life.

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