Our choices are one of the three things we can control. On a planet we have to share with billions of people, a gauntlet of circumstances, and an ever-changing cycle of seasons, taking ownership of just three things can seem really small. We often strive to control more. And our attempts to do so are the cause for so much hurt, chaos, and confusion in the world.
We can plant ourselves in the Victim Circle, blaming others for our lot in life. We can flirt with the boundaries of the Freedom V. But the truth is there is nothing more revealing about who we are than the choices we make. Our decisions reveal our character. They are the proving ground. Where best intentions go to die and our internal strivings are brought into external communities.
When a decision bursts forth, it says a lot about us. It says a lot about who we are, what matters to us, and what we are trying to do.
What You Value
When we make a choice, it shows what we value. Our choices are based on what matters most to us, what we hold most dear. Whether we are aware of it or not, our choices are about a vision we mean to accomplish. Sometimes we borrow this vision from our parents or popular culture. Sometimes we dig deep and take ownership and stewardship of it based on the truest sense of who we are. No matter where it comes from, whether healthy or holy, borrowed or discovered, named or unnamed, our choices reveal where we want to go (vision) and what motivates us to get there (values).
Making a choice is like showing your cards in a hand of poker. A decision, as something we can control, is a mechanism for revealing truth by acknowledging ownership. With so many choices available, we make our values known based on which of those choices we settle upon. It is no small thing.
What You Believe Is Yours
Choices reveal what we believe we have the ability to steward, affect, and influence. In short, it shows others what we believe is ours. It exposes what we think belongs to us.
We cannot escape the reality that we control our own decisions. The way we exercise that power in our own lives lets others know what we believe in is our sphere of influence. A choice is something that belongs to us. One of the few things. And the specific choices we make are boundary lines. They show where we believe we have a right to decide and where we don’t. Exercising decision-making is a way of shading in the borders of where we stop and others begin.
What You Expect
The last thing our choices say about us is what we expect. They pull the veil off our hidden agendas, hopes, and dreams. They shed light on our expectations.
Sometimes, we are so good at hiding our expectations, we conceal them even from ourselves. Our choices might help reveal our expectations, even to us!
Choices are powerful and they should be made boldly, but not lightly. They reveal who we are. And the world needs to know who we are. We need the world to know as well, so they can give us feedback and help us to make better, truer decisions in the future. This is how community builds character and how character builds community. Choices are vulnerable, they expose us to risk and rejection. But they are also the way we express who we are.