Encouragement for Today - August 3, 2012


T. Suzanne Eller

August 3, 2012

Choice Points
T. Suzanne Eller

"And your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, 'This is the way, walk in it,' when you turn to the right or when you turn to the left." Isaiah 30:21 (ESV)

According to recent statistics, I made 5,000 decisions today. Seriously?

Well, I made a decision to get out of bed. I made a choice to put on my tennis shoes and run at 6 a.m.

I chose peanut butter Cheerios™ over oatmeal. I decided which bills to pay. What to make for dinner. Whether to answer a phone call. Which clothes to wear. Whether the plants needed watering or if they could wait another day. I chose to fill up the small car instead of the gas-guzzler.

I may have made more than 5,000 decisions today!

Some of our every day choices are random, others weighty, but many of our decisions are choice points. Choice points are seemingly insignificant decisions yet they lead us in one direction or another.

I choose whether to react in anger, or respond with understanding to my husband.

I choose whether or not to create drama with a friend who hurt my feelings.

I choose time with my Heavenly Father, or push that time to another day . . . again.

I choose whether or not to say those words that cause my child pain.

Recently I was on a mission trip and the team was exhausted after nearly six days of intense travel. We had missed a train and stood on the platform in the moonlight. It was nearing midnight and cold and wet. Our next ministry event was early in the morning.

The coordinator walked over. "I'm so sorry," she said. "I didn't mean for it to work out this way."

There I stood at a choice point.

I could share my frustration. I could explain that my sleep tank was on empty. I could say nothing, while sighing with a martyred expression.

As she waited for my reply, I reminded myself what a privilege it was to to be there. That ease and comfort were never offered our Savior, and Iosing a little sleep was nothing in comparison to anything He went through. I reminded myself that everyone around me was just as tired as I was.

"I'm fine," I said, "In fact it's been an amazing day and I can't wait to see what God does tomorrow."

She grabbed me and pulled me in a huge hug. "Thank you, Suz."

I wish I could say I handle every choice point that way, but sometimes I fail. It's my prayer that I'll remember how much those choice points matter. You see, they don't just affect me; they affect those within the vicinity of my decisions, throwing them into a choice point of their own.

In the 5,000 decisions you make today, how many of them will be choice points?

How will your response affect the people around you?

What can you do differently as you make the next 5,000 choices tomorrow?

Dear Lord, I sometimes feel overwhelmed by all my choices, and it makes me cranky. Today as I make my 5000 decisions, walk with me, remind me of how my choices affect others and help me choose wisely. In Jesus' Name, Amen.

Related Resources:
Do You Know Him?

Visit Suzie's blog for encouraging verses and tips to help you make wise choice points and a giveaway of Lysa TerKeurst's new book, Unglued.

Unglued: Making Wise Choices in the Midst of Raw Emotions by Lysa TerKeurst

30 Days to Taming Your Tongue and accompanying Workbook by Deborah Smith Pegues

When you purchase resources through Proverbs 31 Ministries, you touch eternity because your purchase supports the many areas of hope-giving ministry we provide at no cost. We wish we could, but we simply can't compete with prices offered by huge online warehouses. Therefore, we are extremely grateful for each and every purchase you make with us. Thank you!

Reflect and Respond:
Keep a journal this week of choice points. Note those that lead you in the wrong direction. Are there common themes?

If you were overtired, how can you implement rest?

If you were trying to live a packed life with your spiritual tank unfilled, will you stop and fill it up?

Power Verses:
Proverbs 16:9, "The heart of man plans his way, but the LORD establishes his steps." (ESV)

Philippians 4:8, "Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things." (ESV)

© 2012 by T. Suzanne Eller. All rights reserved.

Proverbs 31 Ministries
616-G Matthews-Mint Hill Road
Matthews, NC 28105

Originally published Friday, 03 August 2012.