It’s not about chance, but choice. Yet isn’t it true that all too often we find ourselves acting as if we really don’t have a choice? We are compelled by circumstances, overwhelmed by our past, or influenced by others into a certain course of thought or behavior. We really had no choice.
The ability to choose is such a remarkable gift. To have the power to decide for ourselves and in so doing, chart our own course, is a precious privilege that countless have spilled blood over in order to obtain for themselves and others. Yet often this freedom is poorly maintained and falls into a state of disrepair where it is barely operative. Instead of choice being clear and decisive, it is corroded and weak. Then if we’re not careful, it is nothing at all.
Choice is given to us by our Father. It is one of the few things that is uniquely ours. We can make a foolish choice or a wise one, but it is our choice. This is one of the things that separate us from animals. A lure flashes in front of a fish and instinct takes over. It does not process information and make a conscious decision—it follows its impulse for either food or safety and whichever is stronger determines its action. We make our choice, then our choice makes us. This has been the truth from Adam and Eve down to today. In the end, we choose what will compel, overwhelm, or influence our thoughts and behaviors. If we consistently choose God over the years, we become godly. If we continually choose self, we become selfish. There’s nothing accidental or incidental about it. We become what we choose.
One of the worst things we can do is to muddle and drift our way through decisions— not stopping to think things through or identify the factors that are influencing us. The best we can do is to strive to make correct choices for clear reasons—to understand not only what we should do but why we are doing it. These are decisions that please the Lord. These are the choices He calls upon His people to make in order to be blessed.
I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live and that you may love the Lord your God, listen to his voice, and hold fast to him. For the Lord is your life. (Deuteronomy 30:19-20).