Welcome to another addition of Real Talk Tuesday! I want to talk to everyone about therapy. I think EVERYONE should go to therapy. Just kidding… that’s not what I want to talk about. 😉 Although I do think good therapy should be a required human being thing. Especially for teenagers and college students.
What I REALLY want to talk about today is actually preventative therapy… something YOU can do to prevent a scarring situation in your life. That is… your choices. Every day of your life you make choices. We make choices that we think don’t matter, like what we eat for dinner or watch on tv. We also make choices with how we treat the people we come in contact with. It could be family, it could be coworkers, peers at school, or maybe the person in line in front of you at the grocery store. We make choices based on our emotions and feelings, what we think is right or wrong, and sometimes out of fear. Often we blame others for the choices we make, or the lack of choices we have. Sometimes we know we are making a bad choice but don’t care about the consequences or try to justify it. Sometimes we have such deep and sorrowful regrets from a choice we made because we didn’t realize the severity of the outcome. You didn’t have wisdom. Sometimes it’s hard to take full ownership of certain decisions.
Lately I’ve become increasing aware of how our choices of all consequence effect our overall life, happiness, and future. As my organization says every day “The choices you make now will effect you later”. I heard that phrase every day over the last year but has it truly sunk in? From silly things like what we decide to eat to bigger things like goals/dreams/ideas… they ALL shape the outcome of our day, week, month, year… life! We all make our choices. How do you make yours?
The fruit of making good choices sometimes doesn’t physically manifest until years later. However, as soon as you make that right choice – you know it! It’s a load off your shoulders. You can breathe. Even if it’s a difficult choice you have peace that you made the right one. The older I get the less tolerance I have for making wrong/bad choices only because I hate the way it makes me feel. It’s a sickening feeling. It’s a “not living up to my potential” feeling. Justifying a wrong decision is a nasty feeling. Mediocrity is a disgusting feeling to me. I realized it’s as simple as making a choice. You just DON’T lie to yourself. You DON’T make excuses. You DON’T let yourself off the hook when difficulty arise.
You may be thinking… “Ok, it might be simple for you but not for me…. you don’t know my situation… my life… this is an impossible desicion… there IS no right choice… I don’t even know what the right choice is…” etc. All of this was me until I met the real Jesus. Not the Sunday School version, not a story book version, not a label I put on myself to get into heaven. I met the REAL Jesus – the person, the God, the Savior, my friend. God can give you an incredible life and He WANTS to. He has done it for me. This is part of my story. But I had to be a willing recipient. Are you willing to do what it takes to live an incredible life?
Let me explain. Now that I’m closing in on 30 years on this planet (yikes, it’ll be here before I know it) I have so many friends from my teenage years that have lunch with me now and ask how I “did it”. At first I’m like “did what?”, I’m just living my life. Most of them say something like “you’re so lucky you are married and have a loving husband”… or “you’re so lucky you are doing exactly what you wanted to do in life”… or more recently “I can’t wait until I’m at the place I can be happily married and move into a house together, how did you do that?”. I realized my situation is a bit rare. I absolutely know that God has blessed me and I am forever thankful of course, but for a moment I forgot that so rarely do young people grow up to be passionate Christ followers and stay that way. It’s so crazy to me because I’m not better than anyone else, I’m not any stronger, I am not more worthy. I am where I am today for one reason. I followed Jesus! I made that choice. I followed His call on my life and was 100% obedient. Now, this “100% obedience” thing is VERY difficult at times – but worth it! When I screw up I ask for forgiveness. Believe me I’ve had some huge screw ups in my past. Instead of blaming others, circumstances, or lack of options for my bad decision… I just let it all go. Took ownership. I got closure and moved on. It’s not always easy but I gotta look forward! There’s one thing in particular that I am truly shocked that God forgave me and still still decided to bless me. He blessed us in spite of our mistakes when we come to Him with a heart of repentance. Thank God for His grace. His purpose for my life is higher than my screw ups! I learned and gained wisdom from my mistakes.
But, even out of all this there is still one thing that is the MOST important thing I did. I asked God for wisdom. I gave my choices to Him. They aren’t my choices anymore. I started becoming consistent in my devotional and prayer life. The last two years or so I’ve put extra time and emphasis in asking God to use prophetic gifts in and through my life. I read His Word. I listen to sermons by wise preachers with sound doctrine. I put Godly people in my life who are more wise than me. I have someone keep me accountable. I spend time with Jesus. I listen to this song. I worship. I thank Him.
We are not wise on our own. You can look at the fruit of your own life and see. Wisdom bears fruit. If you are in an impossible situation – you were not wise. I’ve been there, believe me. The great thing about our Savior is that it is NEVER too late to turn to Him. Give HIM your problems, issues, and… CHOICES. He will turn your life around and work all things together for your good. That’s a promise He makes us. He has made a promise for us to have an incredible life with Him. Life can be hard but we make it harder by pretending we know what’s best. We make it harder by living without Christ and His wisdom. Maybe you need to come back to LIFE!
It is this total, complete, passionate love of Christ that has caused me to be 100% obedient. My obedience has caused doors to open doors for me. God has blessed me in using His wisdom. He takes care of me and gives me more than what I need. He is faithful to me as I am faithful to Him. Certainly there are times when life is difficult for me. The loss of a loved one. The fallout from a wrong decision. God might ask me to do something that stretches my comfort zone. God always redeems and send me His grace. I am so glad to be a Christ follower! God wants to do something NEW and refreshing in YOUR life too! Now THIS is living!
“But blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord,
whose confidence is in Him.
They will be like a tree planted by the water
that sends out its roots by the stream.
It does not fear when heat comes;
its leaves are always green.
It has no worries in a year of drought
and never fails to bear fruit.”
“You take me higher than I’ve been before
It’s Your perfect love that sees me soar
God Your freedom is an open door
You are everything I want and more
This is living now!“
-Hillsong Young and Free