So I was slow to realize that living an aware life results in far more choices (both good and bad) and an increased capacity to experience loss and pain. But the alternative is living an unexamined life where I was defending the limited things I understood or believed I understood rather than examining my assumptions against various learning opportunities. This aware living thing is scary but oh so rewarding as I found how deeply connected I am to folks with extremely different life experiences than my own.
And it is very freeing to realize that God will help me exercise self-control and wisdom in the opportunities I identify, rather than just floating along without regard to choices that lead to more oopportunities. We have challenges aplenty, but we have confidence that not only will we journey with God's love and grace, but we are promised that we can actually find blessings in the darkest of times. I know this seems radical, and it IS radical, because our culture pounds in our heads that "safety" is the only thing that counts. But frankly, few medical breakthroughs or scientific discoveries or great works of art or amazing music or engineering marvels have come as the result of cowering in fear and distress. And then, neither has great kindness or persistent mercy or life-saving generosity.
The only thing better than learning I had authority over choices in my life was learning that I did not have that opportunity and responsibility all alone, but rather these choices and opportunities are part of God's plan for me. I have given up the notion that I will, at least in this lifetime, ever get "it" completely right, but I'm so grateful to understand the power of choices and the comfort of the God who coaches and empower and heals us along the way.
What in your life would you like to start changing today?
1 Peter 1:6