We Make Choices

February 8, 2016
by Marilyn LaPierre

Luke 12:37a – Blessed are those servants whom the master, when he comes, will find watching. (NKJV)

I have sometimes been confronted with this accusation: "You only believe in God because your parents ground it into your head when you were young." The implication is that our parents taught us their beliefs, and we have quietly accepted them through the years without ever challenging them. Thus, all we Christians believe exactly what our parents believe because they, with the help of religious leaders and erroneous books and media, have taught it to us.

I beg to differ. Many people throughout the centuries have demonstrated great deeds and met superhuman challenges because of their faith in God — a God Whom they have never seen, I might add. Does it sound plausible that through all these centuries, people would meet these challenges and, indeed, suffer and even give up their own lives for a belief that is apparently so trivial and has such obvious holes in it? Are the unbelievers saying, then, that up to this point, billions of people were so weak-minded that they couldn't figure this all out for themselves? Is religious belief a matter of rote and memory, or an intelligent choice? Whenever we mortals come upon a difficulty, we approach it from many angles. We examine the hypothesis, we weigh one opinion against another, we mull over it for a while, we pray about it, and finally, we make our decision to believe or disbelieve.

I believe that divine intervention plays a major role as well. When we meet Christ and choose to accept His forgiveness, being set free from sin and guilt is so liberating, that we are transformed, and become eternally grateful to God. Making choices in our lives is something that we have always done. We choose to treat others with kindness and respect, we choose to forgive, we choose to do our jobs to the best of our ability. These choices have not been forced on us; we choose them because they improve our lives and those of others. We want to believe in these things.

To believe in the goodness of a Deity Who does not harm, Who does not wish our destruction, and Who promotes peace and love among people is something that my freedom of will desires to follow. I am happier when I choose good as opposed to choosing to hate, to take revenge, and to treat others badly. Just to think that there is not a God and that I have been duped all my life leaves me with ashes in my mouth and nothing to look forward to or strive for. To believe in the goodness of God and to follow His example brings happiness to me and to many others. Which weighs better on the scale?

Jesus asks, "When the Son of Man comes, will He really find faith on the earth?" (Luke 18:8b NKJV) I know what I choose, and I pray that those I love, as well as my readers, will choose goodness as well.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, increase our faith in the goodness that You are, and help us to walk quietly and surely towards a loving and peaceful paradise that You promise. Amen.

About the author:

Marilyn LaPierre <momintoronto46@hotmail.com>
Innisfil, Ontario, Canada

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Great thoughts Marilyn.


    Thanks for your words this day. I think you are truly gifted.


    Lovely ~ we will continue to walk quietly and surely forwards together.


    Well said, Marilyn.
    Thank you.


    Hi Marilyn,
    I just read your PresbyCan devotion. Very well done.


    Thank you Marilyn. Wonderful to be raised that way. Another thought — some of us had to step out of our parents pattern and move into that of Christ.


    Hi Marilyn, Thanks for your contribution to the daily devotional site. I found it very good.
    Blessings.


    Thanks Marilyn for sharing your thoughts and conclusions with us. It’s simply beyond me how anyone could face the challenges life throws at them without faith in Christ Jesus. Blessings and prayers.


    So True Marilyn,
    Could not agree with you more.
    Mama was not always right.
    Thanks for your witness.
    Bless your heart.


    Hello Marilyn.
    I had to look up the word “rote” as I had not heard that word and was curious. It does fit well, the way you stated.
    In regards to choosing goodness, may I add a bit of mercy also, and make reference to Psalm 23.
    I do give thanks unto our Redeemer for great patience and mercy, so that I could be saved from the wrath to come, due me, because of my sin.
    (USA)


    It seems to me that the critic who suggests that religion is “ground” into children’s heads has the right data but a wrong interpretation.
    Faith and commitment are the result of growing up in a faith-filled family or a faith-filled congregation – where children “catch” faith. That is, the purpose of teaching Bible stories etc. is not to impress “correct” belief on children but to live and relate out of that belief in a way that helps the child to experience their own relationship with God and with the community of faith.
    And, of course, teenagers and adults who have not grown up in Christian families or in the Christian community often “stumble” into a congregation and “catch” a faith by which they can live.
    (AB, CANADA)


    Hello Marilyn,
    My Grandfather, his son, and other family members, all minister, and we were brought up with very rigid rules. I do have some difficulty seeing pastors in the pulpit on Sunday morning in blue jeans and tennis shoes.
    I cannot remember a time that I didn’t love Jesus, but came to a time in my teens that I needed to make my own personal commitment to Him. Then I was able to talk with Daddy about a couple of questions I had about theology issues that had bothered me. As we know, many rules and laws in theologies as “lifted” from the Scriptures, maybe just one verse. Then a man walked into my life who was a real Bible lover and scholar. He was able to put the theology scriptures I had been taught and questioned back into place and then I understood very well what I had questioned. I had not planned to marry a minister, he hadn’t planned to be one, but after we were married God’s plan for our lives became very clear and the education processes began. After seminary, ordination, a short time as a senior pastor, he served many years as a Chaplain.
    Thank you for your devotional today.
    (California)


    Awesome devotional. Thank you. Amen to your prayer.


    Dear Marilyn,
    I’m glad you choose God, who extends grace and goodness of Jesus Christ freely to us, and gives us the freedom and the mandate to pass on the truth.
    Thank you for your devotional.


    Thank you for your message.
    It is so true.
    My husband and I did not grow up in Christian homes.
    We gave our lives to Christ through Billy Graham when we heard his movie Restless ones.
    We went to the Holy Land and have been baptized in Jordan River.

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