Each day you make choices that affect your future. When you choose to eat a candy bar instead of an apple, you affect how healthy you will be in the future. When you choose how much to spend and how much to save, you affect your future financial stability. When you choose how you treat family and friends, you affect how healthy your relationships will be. But the most important choice you make is when you choose how to respond to God. How you respond to God today will determine the increase and blessing you receive in the coming year, and, ultimately, how you choose to respond to God will determine your destiny.
The Bible talks a lot about the importance of our choices. The entire 28th chapter of Deuteronomy is dedicated to choosing to do right and being blessed or choosing to do wrong and being cursed. Joshua 24:15 offers a clear choice between serving false gods or serving the Lord. When Elijah challenged the prophets of Baal, he asked, “How long will you falter between two opinions? If the Lord is God, follow him; but if Baal, follow him” (1 Kings 18:21). Romans 12:9 sums up the theme of choice: “Abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good.”
When you make a choice against one thing, you make a choice for something else. When you make up your mind to abhor evil, you make the choice to cling to what is good. When you choose to ignore the prompting of the Lord in an area, you are making the choice to do something that opposes His best plan for your life. Choosing to do right isn’t always easy, but it’s worth it. And God’s grace is always sufficient.
Here are three ways to make good choices:
- Recognize that everyone faces temptations. That includes you! At some point, you WILL be tempted to make a bad choice. James 1:14 says that we are tempted when we become enticed by our own natural desires. Temptation is a given. Don’t be surprised by it. Rather, expect to be tempted and be prepared for it.
- Prepare NOW to make good choices in the future. Praying, fasting and reading the Bible will fill you with wisdom and power so that you are prepared to make the right choice when you are faced with a difficult situation. If you wait to prepare until you are already facing the temptation, it is easier to make a bad choice. Prepare ahead of time. Pray, fast and read your Bible on a regular basis. Start now!
- Develop relationships with other people who are striving to make Godly choices. Many of the people you encounter don’t share your values. Attending church, volunteering to serve, and participating in a small group puts you in contact with others who face the same struggles you face. Making the right choice is easier together.
Your choices matter. They determine the course of your life. In Deuteronomy 30:15, the Lord says, “Today I am giving you a choice. You can choose life and success or death and disaster.” Make up your mind today to make good choices. Turn away from what is evil and hold on to what is good.