Do you ever think that your walk as a Christian seems to resemble the Israelite’s experience in the desert? Do you feel spiritually dry and as if you are going over old ground time and again? This might include sin-confess cycles, being stuck in past hurts or in unhelpful behaviour patterns. Do you feel somehow that you are not able to lay hold of God’s promises for your life? Many people do. Do you know, perhaps with a deep ache, that your heart and life need to change for the better? Do you long for a way through that no matter what bad choices you have made in the past or whatever wounds you have been given, you can choose to change today, not tomorrow, because God’s way joyously gives you freedom? If this is you, here is real hope:
While different reasons can contribute to this situation, one key aspect – which is at the heart of many of these struggles – is easily overlooked: the importance of the choices we make. Our choices play a big part in our growth as people.
1. God has given us free-will choice.
The fact that we are free to make our own decisions, shows that God loves and respects us. He will not force us to do anything we don’t want to do. He will counsel us to do what He knows is best for us, but the choice is ultimately ours.
2. Our choices have consequences: good or bad.
This relates to all areas of our life, e.g.
3. Our choices start with a thought
All our choices, big or small, begin with the thoughts we choose to think. These then turn into the words we choose to speak (over ourselves, others or our circumstances) and the actions we choose to take. As far as words are concerned, the Bible says very clearly that they can either be life-giving or destructive (see Proverbs 18:21). We choose which way it’s going to go and therefore what the consequences look like.
4. Only we can change the choices that we make
When it comes to living a fulfilled life, we are neither at the mercy of others nor at the mercy of our circumstances or our past. This truth is both challenging and liberating. Changing the choices we make will change the direction of our life. Nobody can do it for us. If we choose to live according to God’s ways, He will help us accomplish it. He also promises to bless us: “Blessed is everyone who fears the LORD, who walks in his ways!” (Psalm 128:1)
The question is, what keeps people from making these important decisions and moving forward in life? Some of the main hindrances are:
Learning to make good and godly choices is an integral part of maturing as a Christian. What are some of the steps we can each take in order to leave the ‘desert’ behind and enter into the ‘promised land’ God has for us?
As we learn to make one godly decision at a time, we will not only grow in maturity, but our life will also become more and more fruitful.
Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. Romans 12:2
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