We discussed in a blog earlier this week about the necessity of bringing our thoughts subject to the obedience of Christ. In today’s blog we hold our choices up to the light of God’s love and discover the challenges of making a godly choice.
“But if serving the LORD seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD.” Joshua chapter 24 verse 15 (New International Version)
The wisdom in this verse is acknowledging that our choices reflect who we serve. If we are serving God, we will make the choice that best pleases Him. That choice will line up with God's Word and God will give us a peace about making that choice because He is pleased.
The challenge is that there are other contenders for our service. Joshua refers to these contenders as the gods of our ancestors or the gods of the Amorites. First, consider that contender # one, your family--mama, daddy, granddaddy, great great grandmama (ancestors) and other relatives have opinions about everything and you've been exposed to and influenced by them for years.
Any thought that rules you might as well be a god because you bow to it.
If you are trying to decide whether to leave or stay in a place or relationship and all your life you've been taught to be loyal, you just might choose to stay even though everything inside you is saying go. In this case loyalty is the ruling thought. Your dad was loyal, your granddad was loyal, therefore you must be loyal and stay. You choose to obey the little god thought and stay, even though the Spirit of God inside of you is saying go. On the other hand if family tradition has taught you to get going when the going gets rough, you will do that—even when the Spirit of the Lord is saying hold on. Sometimes we can’t forgive others because retaliating is in our bloodline and we just can’t let an offense go. Wow!
Contender # two is the opinion of those in our everyday world who have influence over us--friends, bosses, landlords, spouses, co-workers, the media etc. (the gods of the Amorites in whose land you are living.) We are commanded to be in the world not of it. (2 Corinthians 6:17) The world has its own way of doing and thinking. The only opinion that ought to matter in our lives is God's. The only thought that our choices should be based on is a God-thought. People in power who sign our checks or hold our leases or hand us our report cards are no match for our God. They may condone sin or live shabbily or spout their homemade philosophies and want us to agree or be silent. They may even twist a scripture to suit their way of living. We have to consistently choose to serve the Lord. Our loving service to the Lord is about submission and obedience to Him and His Word. We can't necessarily shut our ears to influences past or present, but we can choose to hear and obey God in spite of them.
We live in a day and age when sin runs rampant and what is politically correct or pleasing to man is more important than what is pleasing to God. As believers, we don't have to fall for the okey doke. We don’t have to conform to the ungodly influences in our lives. If we don't stand for something, we will fall for anything.
As you contemplate making a choice in 2013, diligently seek the Lord and see if that choice would be pleasing to Him. Search God’s Word. Get into God’s presence (Psalms 100:4) until you experience His peace about the matter. Then by faith, go for it.