This morning I am teaching on free will to a group of first and second graders. It’s really only a lesson into, but nevertheless, it’s got me thinking – how do you get people, adults or kids, to grasp the sheer Power of their Choices? Our free will is the greatest and yet most dangerous gift God has given us. When I say “dangerous” you may immediately think I mean because of how it can be misused. And of course, that is true. But I am more thinking of the loss when it is NOT used. Missed opportunity, missed potential, kids or people who failed to reach their potential in life because they simply refuse to make the big or little choices daily that would get them there. How do you motivate or inspire others to grab a hold of the Power they have to Choose?! This AMAZING POWER we have to CHOOSE what we want to do each day and with our lives? Now some will be quick to point out that there are many things we can’t control or can’t change or can’t choose. Of course! I can’t go buy myself a Ferrari this afternoon, nor (more painfully) my six kids to the park. Life doesn’t always turn out the way we hoped or planned, BUT… do we focus on what we CAN’T choose? Or on what we can? The reality is, there is ALWAYS MORE THAT WE CAN CHOOSE than that we can’t if we are willing to SEE it.
So, the question remains, how do we instill this in kids? How do we inspire them to seize their life? To make good choices? To dream and to go for it? And how do we NEVER STOP saying, “TODAY I’m going to make some choices that will move me forward and stop the stall or the circling pattern I’m in?”
To move forward, stay on the right path, or get back on the right path, you must be willing to make the tough choices others are too afraid to make. I’ve certainly made some bad decisions in my life, but I try to be a person who is willing to make bold decisions when needed. Two near death experiences makes you very aware you only live once. I refuse to allow inaction to hold me back. Other obstacles in life can hold me back – but may it never be my own inability or unwillingness to make Choices when they need to be made. So I moved across the country to get out of an unhealthy situation. Once I had to choose to go to the boss and fess up. I’ve quit a job I loved, really loved, because the boss was not doing things right behind closed doors and I wanted nothing to do with it. I have chosen to barely watch TV. I rearranged my life to work from home. (I wish I could choose to get up earlier! But that is just too hard! LOL) I chose the Mac over the PC to give myself many more hours a week for family and ministry and less headaches. (That isn’t a jab at my PC friends, that was a hard switch for me, I once was one of those PC guys annoyed by my Mac friends trying to convert me! But I made the choice because of what it meant for my life, it was one of the best choices I’ve made to be quite honest.)
Choices. You make them every day. There might be some big ones you need to make. Don’t put them off any longer. But today there are little choices too. Don’t under estimate them. Your life is the sum of the little choices you make.