I wonder if it has ever crossed your mind what an incredible thing choice is, and what a wonderful thing God did when He gave us the gift of choice. I don’t think if I was God, and I had just created a magnificent universe with this one small, but stunning, habitable planet as a home to these livings being I had also created, called ‘mankind’, that I would then give this ‘mankind’ creature choice.
The gift of choice, sets us apart from the animals who work by learning and instinct in order to survive. It is part of our being ‘made in the image of God’ Genesis 1:26 and it gives us a dignity the animals don’t have. The gift of choice involves us having a conscience, being able to explore options, visualise out comes, and even act sacrificially. Having ‘choice’ gives us opportunities both to plan and to act in good ways and bad. We get to be decision makers, there is no coercion with God.
Choice is an incredible gift to give anyone, but for God to do that, already knowing that it would involve Him coming to our planet, in the same form as the people He had created, in order to pay the price for all the bad choices that they have and will ever make, is simply mindblowing. God so wanted relationship with creatures who could choose to be in that relationship with Him, that He did just that in Jesus. No wonder there is such celebration over those who make it their choice to follow Him. Luke 15:7
The wonderful thing is that, having made our choice to follow Him, we still have the ongoing gift of choice. He does not now program us to obey His every wish or command like robots. Relationship is still of the utmost importance to the Lord, and His desire is to lead us through life as a Father and friend. He wants us to grow in our desire to please Him, to learn how to discern His will, and to fellowship with the beautiful Holy Spirit, enjoying life as we go.
How often do we say to ourselves something like, “I don’t know what to do”, “I can’t decide”, “I wish I didn’t have to make a choice”. Well next time we hear ourself struggling to know what to do in a situation, let us turn our hearts to Him and just thank Him for the gift of choice. He wants to be involved in our choices and for us to grow into ‘having the mind of Christ’ 1 Corinthians 2:16. Turning in our hearts to thank Him, when we have a choice to make, is a way of including Him in those choices and growing in our relationship with Him.
Let us thank Him every day that He didn’t create a world and fill it with dutiful robots, but He gave us the gift of life, and with it the gift of choice. Let us thank Him too that He came to ‘seek and save the lost’ Luke 19:10, to save us from the consequences of our bad choices. We can also thank Him that He wants to be involved in all our choices. The big life changing choices, and small day to day ones, that we have to make. He loves us and wants our friendship with Him to grow in every choice that we make, and when we really ‘get’ that, then making choices starts to get exciting.
‘This resurrection life you received from God is not a timid grave-tending life. It’s adventurously expectant, greeting God with a childlike “What’s next Papa?” God’s Spirit touches our spirit and confirms who we really are. Romans 8:15,16 (The Message.)