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 . . . (Deut 30:19-20)
A lot of things can happen in the run of a day, a week, a year, that are outside of my control and can turn my assumptions, plans or hopes upside down. They can be seemingly minor things that end up with major impacts. They can be significant setbacks, or they can shatter my world. I have no choice about how others act or events unfold. My only choice is how I will respond.
Reactions are very different from responses. Reactions happen automatically and must be dealt with. Responses are the choices we make to deal with our reactions. For some of us, there is no difference; we let it all hang out and let the chips fall where they may. Jesus shows us a better way.
Like Him, I can choose to respond in ways that help turn things around, that build my character, and that honor God.
I can choose to praise God when I least feel like it.
I can choose to trust God when I feel most lost.
I can choose to hope when life is darkest.
I can choose to love when I am attacked, betrayed or deserted.
I can choose to persevere despite the obstacles.
I can choose to resist the easy and the sleazy.
I can choose to fear God and not people.
I can choose to be God-centred and not I-centred.
I can choose life in Christ, for Christ and with Christ, knowing that nothing in all creation can separate me from His love.
Heavenly Father, full of love and mercy and grace, help me today to choose life by choosing You as my example, my guide, and my strength. In Jesus’ name I ask it. Amen.