Posts Tagged ‘choices’

 If my hair wasn’t already thinning, I just might pull it out.

This is a good follow up to my last post on Human Nature.

I don’t know why the total ignorance of reality constantly being paraded before us still surprises me, but sometimes it does.

We’re corrupt, fallen, selfish people, and without the regeneration and new life given through Jesus Christ we can never really comprehend morality. People can learn good habits and even have good humanitarian reasons why “being good” is, … well … good. But depraved minds just don’t really get it.

Every one’s favorite “Twilight” star (thankfully that series is over). … anyway, a while back she was apparently caught in a heated make-out session with the directer. Not a big shock there. She’s 22 and he’s 41. Still no real big shock there either, but it gets a little too day-time-TV drama when you learn she has a boyfriend and he has a wife and kids!

Scandalous, even in our rapidly declining society.

The part that just really got me all riled up is a supposed “source”‘s take: Apparently the girl “is absolutely devastated.” Well, at least she has some conscience left. Let’s pray the Holy Spirit can use it to prompt her to receive the Gospel, if there’s anyone in her life who will share it.

The source went on to tell People, “It was a mistake and a complete lapse in judgment.” (ya think?) “She wasn’t having an affair with Rupert. It was just a fleeting moment that shouldn’t have happened. She never meant to hurt anyone.” We seldom do, but that doesn’t change things. Here’s the REAL kicker that got me, “She’s a good person who just made a bad choice.” 


OK, I don’t want this to be a drama filled, bash on a celeb piece. So let’s forget the who we’re talking about. The Who doesn’t matter.

You don’t get to be hot-and-heavy with a guy nearly 2x your age who has a family and say “Oops, I feel bad about it.”  You don’t accidentally make out with a married man. And a married man sure as heck doesn’t accidentally play kissy-face with a 20-something co-worker.

And yet, many still have the audacity to say, “They’re really good people at heart. It was just a mistake.”

When will we wake up? No they’re not really good at heart. They’re just like the rest of us, “sinful from birth” (Psalm 51:5) and in need of forgiveness (Romans 3:22-24).

People ask how a loving God could allow bad things? We’ve so deluded ourselves that we don’t see that the bad in the world comes from us, and not just the big stuff but even the small miseries. We do them to ourselves and to each other.

If God wasn’t loving, the bible would be about 3 pages long, and He would have sent the whole lot of us straight to hell … and He’d be right to do so!

But He loves us enough to give us life and give us hope, hope that we can be forgiven because of His grace, through faith in Jesus Christ (Ephesians 2:8).

We’re not a bunch of good-at-heart people making mistakes every now and then. We are selfish, pride-filled sinners deserving of justice. Some people have asked me why God puts up with us. If we’re so bad, why doesn’t He just wipe us out? Why drag this out?

We are guilty, and we have a death sentence (Genesis 3). The same reason we keep death row inmates around for decades before actually carrying out the sentence. Mercy. We allow time for appeals and a chance for them to prove their innocence, or maybe even for a pardon to come through. While we are certainly guilty, and there is no higher appeal than God, we can be pardoned. Jesus Christ died and rose again to purchase that pardon for all who would repent and believe. God is not being cruel in allowing us to stay in this broken world with all of its miseries and problems. He is giving us time to come back to Him so that we may be pardoned.

“Do what you want.
It’s your life.
Do whatever makes you happy.
Friends aren’t the ones who have to live with your choices years down the road.”

That was the advice given to a friend of mine facing a pretty emotional situation, trapped between intense feelings and desires and wanting to do the right thing.

If we’re honest, we have all likely said something similar to this, or maybe thought it ourselves when we didn’t  like the advice others were giving us.

However, when something is emotionally charged, or we are blinded by a strong desire for a particular choice, we don’t always think clearly. That’s why God tells us that we should get some advice from multiple wise sources (Proverbs 1:5).

So let’s break down the statement and see what we find.

1. Do what you want.

Well that’s a silly thing to say. Apply just a little reason here. This is the kind of logic applied by my 4 year old. “I want it, so give it to me.”

Can you think of a time when what you wanted turned out to be the wrong choice? Of course you can. It’s called regrets, and we all have them. You can’t make it past the age of 12 without racking up at least a few.

Proverbs 12:15 says it this way, “The way of a fool is right in his own eyes, But a wise man is he who listens to counsel.” Just because you want it and it seems right in your opinion doesn’t mean it is the right choice to make.

2. It’s your life.

Remember that you do not exist in a vacuum. How’s the old saying go? “No man is an island.” Your life intersects the lives of others, and your choices and actions will have a ripple effect of consequences for them as well. It is the height of selfishness to go through life carelessly, inflicting pain and stress on those around with with no regard for what you are doing.

Also, let me throw out a couple of verses for you: 1 Corinthians 7:23, “You have been bought with a price.” Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross paid the debt for your sin. You have been purchased by His blood. You have surrendered your life, remember?

Not a christian? OK, there’s this one then, “The earth is the LORD’S, and all it contains, The world, and  those who dwell in it.” (Psalm 24:1) He made it. It’s all His.

It’s not really your life, and even if it was, it would be pretty selfish to not consider the lives of others you will impact with your choices.

3. Do whatever makes you happy.

Seriously? This may come as a shock to you, but life is not about happiness. This goes right along with what was said above. Did you know that one of the definitions of “mature” is the having ability to delay satisfaction?

Happiness is a temporary feeling of pleasure that comes and goes based on the situation at that moment. Do you really want to live your life on that emotional roller-coaster? There are some people who have a chemical imbalance in their brain that takes them on extreme highs of happiness and then down again. It’s such a disruptive and harmful way to live that most of them require medication and/or therapy just to live normal. And you would intentionally want THAT sort of up and down to be what you base your decisions on?

Paul said it this way in Philippians 4:11, “Not that I speak from want, for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am.”

We should learn to be content and not thrown about by the whimsy of our “happiness.” Remember the wise man built his house on the rock (Matthew 7), not on shifting sand. Happiness is shifting and unstable. The Rock of Christ is steady.

4. Friends aren’t the ones who have to live with your choices years down the road.

This goes back to not living in a vacuum. God’s Word says we are to “bear one another’s burdens, and thereby fulfill the law of Christ.” (Galatians 6:2) We are not meant to go through life alone.

Ecclesiastes 4:12 says, “And if one can overpower him who is alone, two can resist him. A cord of three strands is not quickly torn apart.”

Even if the people in your life are not directly bearing your burden along with you, they will have to experience the effects your choices have on you. Was it a good outcome? Was your life enriched? Your friends and loved ones will be enriched as well by the joy and blessing you carry with you. Your stress levels will be down, and your liveliness will be up. People will get to share in that blessing as they interact with you. What if your choices bring pain? The people in your life will endure the effects of that pain in your life as they walk through life with you. Are you Stressed? Bitter? Angry? Cranky? Depressed? They will have to experience the results of that as they interact with you.

As you go through life, your choices will have consequences. Some good. Some bad. And when the result is pain and regret, God does not intend for you to go through that alone. He places friends and family in our lives to bear that burden and walk with us through that pain. He commands that we help one another through life’s tough times and strengthen each other when one of us is weak.

If your friends aren’t going to be there with you to live with the consequences of your choices …. get some new friends.

I will leave you with these verses to consider:

Philippians 2:3, Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves”

Proverbs 16:25, There is a way that appears to be right, but in the end it leads to death.