Wednesday, February 6, 2019

Lesson 2: Excellent Choices

This week we are looking at how to make "excellent choices."  If you haven't picked up Terrie Chappell's book The Choice is Yours, you really should!!  It's easily available on Amazon and other bookseller sites.  *note--I do not receive a penny for any of the books sold or any endorsement of Chappell's book--I just like it*

We have so many options given to us for making choices.  There's the mediocre options, some a bit better, some much worse.  Where can we find the best option and information to make the best choices?

"Navigating through life can be challenging.  There are so many options and so many sources who claim to have the answers.  But thankfully, God has given us two infalliable guides to direct us in the most important choices of our lives."

Jeremiah 17:9--the heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked:  who can know it?

Psychology and man tell us to follow our hearts.  This is not a good choice.  Our hearts are not trustworthy, as Jeremiah himself says in Jeremiah 17:9.  Why should we trust something that can absolutely lead us down the road to ruin?

For instance, impulse shopping--your heart says that item will make you happy...but your bank account and credit cards say otherwise.  Or on a different note, dating the guy you know isn't a Christian, but your heart screams do it.  There's countless women (and men) who have followed their hearts and received heartache in return.  If we listen to scripture, putting God's Word over what our hearts want, we'll have true blessings of God, not just a short happiness in the moment.  We have amazing examples in the Bible by way of David--God did NOT tell him to take another man's wife. David made his heart happy for a short time, but lost so much more in the long run.  King Solomon wrote in Ecclesiastes all about his experiences of trying to please his heart but not finding joy in the decisions he made.  Samson made issues that pleased his heart but were definitely not wise and it led to his death. 

Eve followed her heart.

Our first way to know how to make excellent choices is by reading and following Scripture.  God's Word. 

The second way to know how to make excellent choices is by way of another absolutely amazing gift God gave us...the Holy Spirit.  Jesus said He was leaving, but He would send another Helper.  This Helper, the third person of the Trinity, comes to live inside you after you've trusted Jesus as Lord and Savior. 

John 16:7--"Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away:  for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you."

Ephesians 1:13--"In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation:  in whom also that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise."

John 14:26--But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you."

Once you are saved, you have the Holy Spirit--the Comforter--with you always.  He talks to you, if you will hear Him and seek His voice. 

In my own life, I've had times where I haven't listened as well as I should.  But, when I do listen, I am given good directions.  For instance, just a minor thing while driving behind a *very* slow person on a 2 lane highway over in Missouri.  The speed limit is 60 on this particular highway, and my speedometer barely hits 45 behind this person.  Every part of me wants to speed on by, leave this person in the dust, and go on about my merry way to get to where I'm needing to go.  But, the still small voice says not to.  Don't do it.  So, I stay back behind this person, wondering what it is that is making the Holy Spirit say no.  I mean, it's just a little thing, passing on an open highway...we do it all the time, right?  A little farther down the road, I see why.  Had I passed, I'd have been nose to nose with a State Highway Patrolman on the passing side, and a herd of deer on the side I should be on.  I would have been in the wrong, pulled over for a careless and imprudent ticket (lots of $$ there), and possibly hit one or more of the deer herd (this was during the rutting season and they were everywhere in Missouri and Kansas).  So, lots of money in a needless ticket and possible damage to my truck and a deer, all to try to get a little ways down the road faster.  The Holy Spirit said no.  I obeyed.  Believe me, I'm glad the Holy Spirit said no!!

God has given us both His Word in written form---your bible--and the Holy Spirit to guide you back to His Word.  With those two tools, we can make good choices with no regrets. 

Are you able to hear the Holy Spirit???  If you don't know Jesus as your Lord and Savior, I'd be glad to show you how.  At the top of this page is Romans Road--it lays out from beginning to end how you can know Jesus as Savior. 

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