Sunday, 12 February 2017

Choices, Choices, Choices!!

What is God asking me to do today? Am I going to choose to follow Him, even if it gets uncomfortable and the future is not so clear?  Will I abandon my own thoughts and plans and follow His?

Source: Biblical Proof
Sometimes making the right choice is extremely difficult because so many things influence the choices we make. I mean how hard is it to choose the right clothes to wear for an occasion? I dither in front of the wardrobe; should I go formal, or informal, low key or bright and breezy? Should I wear what I like or what the occasion commands; oh dear choices, choices!  If choosing the right clothes to wear can be difficult and perplexing then how much more difficult is it making the right choice about what we do with our lives?  I hate making choices, the bigger and weightier the decision the harder I find it. Do I go with my instincts or use logic (what will achieve the best outcome in a situation)? So as a good Christian I decided to pray about it, however the real tough choice comes when the Lord seems to be directing me towards something that is actually not what I want to do, or something that makes sense to me. What do I do then? Oh dear choices, choices!! I was thinking about a primary school assembly story I was doing this week about Ruth and it led me to read the story in the Bible. As God does, He used this to challenge me, so I thought  I would pass on my thoughts.

Source: YouTube
In the Bible there was a young woman from Moab called Ruth, who had married an Israelite who was living in her country. After a while her husband died, and not only did her husband die but her sister in law`s husband died and her mother in law’s husband died. So three women were left alone to fend for themselves; what would they do? How would they cope? Making the right decision at this time would be crucial. The mother in law (Naomi) decided to go home to Israel and take her chances with her own people and in Ruth 1:8 she advises the two girls to return to their own country and re-marry which seemed to be the most obvious choice, the logical choice, surely the right choice. One of the girls (Orpah) decided to follow that advice but the other girl (Ruth) felt such a commitment to her mother in law that she begged her to let her go back to Israel with her, even to the point of abandoning her own culture and beliefs and embracing Naomi`s culture and belief. Ruth 1:16-17 `But Ruth replied, ‘Don`t ask me to leave you and turn back. Wherever you go I will go; wherever you live, I will live. Your people will be my people, and your God will be my God. Wherever you die, I will die, and there I will be buried’.  

Her commitment to her mother in law drove Ruth to cling to her and follow her no matter what. This decision then set Ruth on a continuing journey of commitment, trust and faith. At her mother in law’s direction, it took her into the field of a strange and powerful man (Boaz) to gather grain to keep her and Naomi alive. It took her to the threshing floor in the dead of night and lying down next to this powerful man, to a place of vulnerability, trusting that he would not harm her or take advantage of her but would take care of her. All this because she had chosen to stay committed to both Naomi and to her God and choosing to make some very difficult choices, and not to take the easy path. Ruth continued to trust and believe even when things appeared to get complicated and difficult and obstacles appeared to block the way. But the outcome of Ruth`s trust and commitment resulted in her marriage to Boaz and a child (Obed) that would set on course the most earth changing event in History, the birth of the Messiah! Ruth 4:17 ‘The women living there said, ‘Naomi has a son!’ And they named him Obed. He was the father of Jesse, the father of David’. Read the book of Ruth in the bible, it`s only short but such a wonderful story of love, faith trust and commitment.

So, ok, great story, happy ending, but how does that help me in making the choices I have to make every single day? Well, the principles of the story are the same as many of the choices we have to make in our lives:

1. Who am I going to follow?  Ruth chose to follow Naomi`s God whatever that meant. It led her to do some very difficult and challenging things and took her right out of her comfort zone and set her on a course of action that was not clear at first. Regardless of this uncertainty and challenges Ruth chose to follow God’s instruction via Naomi`s direction. What is God asking me to do today? Am I going to choose to follow Him, even if it gets uncomfortable and the future is not so clear? Will I abandon my own thoughts and plans and follow His?

2. Who am I going to trust?  Ruth trusted Naomi and therefore Naomi`s God. It put her in some vulnerable places among people she did not know, and she had to do things she was not familiar with. Regardless of this she did not flinch, she did exactly what God was telling her to do. What is God telling me to do today that may make me feel vulnerable and put me in a place of unfamiliarity? The question I ask myself is; ‘will I flinch, will I pull back, will I choose to take the more sensible, logical path or will I follow what God is telling me?’

3. How committed am I? Ruth was completely committed to both Naomi and to her God. From the moment she left her old country behind she set her face to her new path and never turned back. I`m sure if I had experienced some of the difficulties Ruth had then I would have sat and thought ‘what if I had stayed at home, what if I had made a different choice, what if I tried doing things my way’? But Ruth was committed and only when she had done all that God had told her to do did the final glorious outcome reveal itself. This did not happen until Ruth had made the right choices, stayed committed, and completed the whole journey. Now this is a massive challenge to me, someone who can`t even keep committed to what outfit I`ve chosen to go out in, let alone to follow the Lord’s direction when the path gets difficult.

I am involved with prison ministry and go into a local young offender’s prison to take part in services on a Sunday. Recently I was talking to a couple of the guys about some of the things they had done recently that had landed them in disciplinary situations. I talked with them about what they had done and asked if it is worth the loss of privileges they had received and then went onto talk about making right choices. It was so obvious to me where they were going wrong and so easy for me to point this out to them however the Lord always likes to challenge me when I choose to speak into people`s lives. He likes to get me to look at my own life and see how well I do at making the right choices.

Frankly this week, like so many other weeks, I’ve not done as well as I would have liked. Some things have been good and I feel I have listened and made some good choices, but sadly at other times in haste, or following my own feelings and desires I have made bad choices. The piece of cake I could have managed without, the words said in haste I wish I could take back, the harsh response when gentleness would have been the Lord’s way instead.  Oh, Lord please help me to follow Ruth`s example and choose who I am going to follow and who I am going to trust and help me to be committed to serving you every day and not just my own wants or needs.

Choices! Choices! Choices!  My prayer is Lord please help me to make the right choices.  

Author: Jan Pearson

May God bless and enrich your life

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  1. We constantly face choices in our lives and we often put a lot of time, energy, thought and stress trying to make the 'right' choice. This article made me think of Proverbs 3:5-6 'Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight. If we can do this and hand our choices over to God then He will help us to make the right choice. Thank you for taking the time to share this blessing. God bless.

  2. Thank you SO much dear sister for taking the time to write this Blog. ALL the Glory to God ALWAYS.
    How awesome are the words of the song
    "He is no fool who gives up what he can not keep, to gain what he can never lose".
    The best choice I have ever made was to give my heart to Jesus Christ.
    It is not always easy and we are indeed running a race and the choices we make will determine wether we reach the finish line or not. God help us to make choices that encourage us to run the race to the very end. Help me to always remember that Jesus has already won the victory, Amen

  3. Thank you for an amazing thought provoking article. We can be sure of the one choice we made that was Absolutely spot on and that was the moment just like Ruth that we chose to follow God. Having Jesus in our lives allows us to be led by the Holy Spirit, but that doesn't mean its easy. Lord just like the day we chose to surrender our lives to Jesus, help us now to surrender our decisions to you. Holy Spirit we pray You will guide our thoughts and decisions today and every day. Thank you for taking the time to write and share this blog.

  4. Thank u for the blessing of this blog. Making Godly choices can sometimes be or seem very difficult but actually just like Ruth, it leads to wonderful things and opportunities we couldn't even imagine. May we remember to fix on our eyes on Jesus and may his will be done not ours. Ephisans 5:17 do not be foolish but understand what the lords will is. Amen x

  5. I have greatly enjoyed reading this article . God is getting us ready for eternity to be with him by moulding us into the person he wants us to be? he will guide us and help us on our journey and if we choose the narrow road which will be very challenging and hard like Ruth in that lovely story the best is yet to come? loved the clip of Eric Lydell from chariots of fire? it brought tears to my eyes , I'm so blessed reading this Article and so will many others be . our father God will be glorified through this thank you and God bless you Amen

  6. Thank for a fantastic and timely words because the choices we make affect our hold lifetime I thank God that I made a choice to accept Jesus Christ as my lord and saviour so I can trust him through the holy spirit when I got to make choices which sometimes can be difficult may God peace and blessings to all Amen