Always a choice.
I was listening to a podcast about giving children choices and the suggestion was to give 150 choices to a child by lunchtime for the child to feel like they have control. That is a lot of choices! It looks like “Red shoes or blue?” “Orange juice or milk?” Sit on a chair or a stool?” Just the idea of being able to choose makes the child feel like they are in control of their own lives, even though the parent is still dictating healthy, reasonable and safe choices.
Most of the time I fall into the trap of believing that choices are right or wrong. But our choice is one aspect of what makes our relationship with God beautiful. As a Sovereign and Holy God, He could simply dictate our lives if He chose, but instead He holds out His hand and invites us, leaving the choice up to us. A choice to engage with Him in the stories He is already writing or to turn away from His outstretched hand choose an autonomous life without Him.
Even after choosing to live a life in pursuit of relationship with Christ, there are still millions of choices every day about how we respond to the promptings of His Spirit. Stop and smile at the elderly lady walking ever so slowly across the street or simply ignore her because I’m in a hurry. Text a friend who I know is having a challenging day or just plan to see her later in the day. Call and offer an apology to someone who hurt me or chalk it up to needing space. Sit in the discomfort of my emotion or keep myself busy enough that I don’t have to experience their weight. The choices are endless.
The choice to keep saying yes to the stories God is writing, to participate in the hope He is unleashing in the world will cost you. It will threaten your comfort and leisure. It will challenge your emotional bandwidth. It will cause heartache and seem foolish to those around you. It will require humility to know that there is nothing you can offer, but Christ within you that brings change. It will ask you to sacrifice and over.
And because you know that people realizing the depth of Jesus’ love for them is life changing – you will sign up for the opportunity to say yes, again and again.
Thank you, Jesus for the choice to say, “please allow me to participate in the stories You are writing!”
Yes, let my answer always be yes.