(Courtesy of Joyce Meyer Ministries)
One of the greatest gifts the Lord has given us is the power to choose. In fact, every day, we are faced with hundreds of decisions.
We decide whether or not to get out of bed, what we'll eat, what we'll do, what we will think about, and what we will say. We make decisions about everything from how we style our hair…to how we will react to more serious situations at work or at home.
While it may seem like many of our daily choices are not that significant, it's important to understand that they do matter.
In Deuteronomy 30:19, God says, … I have set before you life and death, the blessings and the curses; therefore choose life, that you and your descendants may live.
It's important to understand that every choice you make is a seed you sow, and those seeds produce fruit in your life – either for life or death. So if we want to have the life Jesus died to give us – an abundant life full of peace and joy – then we need to make wise choices.
Good Choices Lead to a Good Life
I think many times we can be good at focusing on life's "big" decisions only to be defeated by the small ones. The Song of Solomon 2:15 actually tells us that it's the "little foxes" that spoil the vine. Likewise, the many small decisions we make every day add up and greatly impact our lives.
Let me give you an example. I make it a habit to go to bed at 9 o'clock every night so that I can be asleep by about 9:30. If I get to bed on time, then I'm able to get up on time and spend quality time with God before I have to go on with the rest of my day.
Now, some people might think, Does your bedtime really matter that much?
Yes! Because if I decided to simply go to bed whenever I felt like it, I would sabotage my time with God – the very thing I need to grow as a Christian. After a few days, I would also end up feeling tired and worn out from staying up late and begin to wonder why everything seemed so difficult.
This seems so simple, yet I believe "little" things like this affect our lives more than we realize. Using wisdom in our choices means living deeper than what we want, what we think, and what we feel.
Wisdom always chooses to do now what it will be satisfied with later on.
Conversely, foolish choices are often made without any consideration of the consequences. I've actually seen the word foolishness defined as "without common sense."
Now here's the great news: If you have made foolish choices (and we've all done it) and you're not happy with the way things are right now, you can change. The greatest way to overcome a series of bad choices is to make a series of good ones.
The first step is for us to take responsibility for the wrong choices we've made. It's important to be honest with ourselves if we are ever going to change. Jesus says that the truth will set us free (John 8:32), and that includes the truth about ourselves.
The next step is to make a determined decision to change…to begin making a series of wise choices for your future.
There's Something You Need to Know…
It is extremely important to understand that none of us can change ourselves. Only God can give us the strength and ability to change our habits and the way we think, talk, and act. Only He can help us make great decisions for our lives.
I know this because there was a time in my life when I desperately wanted to change. I wanted to be a better person who made right decisions. But it was clear that I couldn't do it on my own. I needed God to heal me, strengthen me, and make me secure and whole in Christ. Only then was I able to choose life on a regular basis.
Whatever changes you need to make, I encourage you to go to God for help. Pray and ask Him to guide you and give you the strength to make wise choices.
In addition, begin to look up scriptures and study the Bible in the areas where you are struggling – whether it's anger, unforgiveness, self-control, or anything else. There is power in God's Word to change your life, and the more you read and study it, the more joy, strength, and freedom you will experience.
So, think about this: What could your life be like if you started making better choices right now? Don't put it off any longer. The truth is there won't be a more convenient time, and you don't have to waste another day missing out on a better future.
I believe you can do it. If your progress seems slow, don't get discouraged and never give up. Because when you stay determined to make wise choices, things will eventually start to change…and you will begin to see the great life God has for you.