One of the most unpalatable truths that we may ever have to face is the fact that the choices we make and sometimes do not make have a very powerful impact on our life.
Choices are always about power. Failure to make the right choice or even not to exercise our options may give that power to someone or something else and leave us feeling weak and ineffective. Choosing the correct decision will open us up to other options of a higher or lower order on that same road. Choice is inescapable, so why not make it a joyful part of living?
What if choosing is one of the most important elements in our daily worship of God? To come before the Creator who sees the end from the start and who is capable of making untold billions of decisions everyday. To live joyfully with the One who is so confident in His ability to choose that He can look all of His people in the eye and say, “ I know the plans I have for you, plans for your welfare not your calamity, to give you a future and a hope.” (Jer 29:11)
He loves to make choices, so why cannot we love it also? He is dedicated to making everything (in time) work together for our good. Walking with the Holy Spirit is about receiving the power to become good and to do good in the course of everyday living. If we are to be made in His image then the way we go about situations must have the essence of His good humor and the brilliance of His excellent choice.
Choices always involve power and we must receive that power in the morning, afternoon and evening of each day. We live our lives today by virtue of the choices we made in prior times. Some of those decisions were easy; some difficult; others seemed almost to make themselves; whilst there were also choices that were so hard they made us pay a price up front that almost sucked the life out of us (life or death issues).
Choices can make and ruin our lives. They have a very real substantive control over who we become and how we live. Choices can put us in command of a situation or strip us of our authority to do well. To be powerful or powerless is a choice of identity. There are no victims in the Kingdom, only in the world. No one has us over a barrel but Someone wants to make us influential.
We make choices of a greater or lower order each day. Where we live, what we eat, what we wear, store purchases, eating out, etc. are lower order decisions that seem inconsequential but may have implications.
Choosing peace, trust, love, laughter, gentleness, calmness, joy, mercy and courage all take us into realms within ourselves that produce power. It is where the image of Jesus first begins to become evident and real. The repercussions are powerful.
Choosing anger, fear, anxiety, bitterness and resentment take us backward on our journey or leave us stuck in the present past unable to emotionally overcome the impact of choices either we make or those made against us.
Sometimes we make choices to blame others when the reality is that we may have handed over our power to them by accepting their viewpoint. When we hand over the initiative in our own lives we abdicate control in our circumstances. One of the fruits of the Spirit is self control.
Bringing our thoughts into a captive state before Jesus is the beginning of self-control. Making calm, joyful, restful choices as a part of our normal intimate relationship with the Lord is the ongoing pursuit of self-control.
What if self-control is easier than we imagine? What if choices are less difficult than we suppose? What if the challenge of God’s goodness is the place where all decisions can be made?
We are being made in His image. When we choose in fellowship with the Lord, He empowers those decisions and takes upon Himself the responsibility for fulfillment both in the situation and in the creation of His image within each of us.
Because of Christ within, we can choose wisely. We can also choose joyfully and calmly. It is time we stopped giving our power away. God gave it to us, it’s part of our fellowship with Him.