No generation ever had as many choices as we do. Recently I went to purchase some orange juice. I stood there trying to choose which brand to buy. Afterward I had to choose between freshly squeezed or from concentrate. Then came the choice between no pulp, pulp added or much pulp. Next, I could choose which additive — Vitamin D and Calcium, Calcium, or Omega 3. I expect there will soon be one for those who don’t know what they want! We have multiple choices wherever we go. Some are merely short-term and make little difference. Some choices may affect our life for many years to come. Others may even determine the quality of life we will have in the future. To further complicate things, we are often forced to make moral decisions between right and wrong. In our culture the line between right and wrong has become blurred by changing values. What one person believes is wrong may not be the same for another. For most of us, our lives are a reflection of the choices we have made.
As a young person I did not have the number of choices that the youth face today. For example, one of my big temptations was not alcohol and drugs. For me, it was smoking and chewing tobacco. When I was in the sixth or seventh grade, some of my buddies were experimenting with cigarettes. One day I brought home a note from school encouraging my parents to join the Parent Teacher Association. Soon afterward my mother sent money for membership. I chose to take money for one of them and keep the other to buy tobacco. That was a bad choice. In those days you could purchase a small bag of tobacco with a string and a tag at the top to close it. There were small papers available to roll your cigarette. To impress my friends I put the bag in my back pocket with the string and tags hanging out. That was another bad choice. My plans were to put the tags in my pocket before I got home and hide the tobacco. I forgot to do that! Mother saw it and knew exactly what it was. I don’t remember what she did and it is probably better that I don’t. It cured me of wanting to smoke cigarettes.
Years ago a leader of Israel called his people together for an important speech. His people had made some bad choices and were going to suffer as a result. His challenge to them was, “Choose you this day, whom you will serve…..But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” (Joshua 24:15) Each of us must choose whom we will serve. Will your choice be self-centered and self-gratifying? Or will you choose to accept the invitation of Jesus to follow him and find in the Bible the foundation upon which you can make the right choices?