Resurrected Living
"What are you going to do with your new resurrected life? This is the heroic question." Richard Rohr

Choices and Consequences


All of our choices have consequences. If I choose to touch a hot stove, then I will burn myself. If I choose to exercise and eat better, then I will be healthier. We sometimes make the mistake of thinking that consequences are only bad. We tend to use the word consequence in this way, but the truth is consequences can be good or bad. What determines are consequences are the choices we make. Bad consequences are the direct result of bad choices, and good consequences are the direct result of good choices. We should note that not all bad and good things that happen to us are consequences. Sometimes bad things just happen, and sometimes good things just happen. A tornado that destroys a home is not a result of bad choices. A stranger that buys your cup of coffee is not a result of your good choices. One is an act of nature and the other is an act of grace. Consequences are directly tied to the choices we make.

At the beginning of the book of Psalms we find a psalm about choices and consequences. Psalm 1 serves as an introduction to this wonderful book of wisdom. In Psalm 1 the psalmist is presenting us with a choice on how we can live our lives, but he wants us to know that this choice has consequences. If we choose to follow the wisdom in the book of Psalms and follow God, then the consequence is a blessed life. If we choose to ignore the wisdom found within the Psalms and not follow God, then the consequence is we will be like chaff that the wind drives away. Our life is a choice and what we choose carries certain consequences.

Jesus teaches the same thing in the Sermon on the Mount. In Matthew 7:24-27 he tells a story about two men who each built a house. One man chose to build his house on a rock foundation. When a great storm came his house was not damaged. The other man chose to build his house on the sand. When a great storm came his house was destroyed. This story that Jesus tells is a metaphor for life. We must make a choice about what we are going to build our life upon, and the choice we make has serious consequences. If we want to benefit from good consequences in the future, then we must focus on the choices we are making right now. We cannot expect good consequences if we continue to make bad choices, but if we make good choices then good consequences will follow. If we choose to trust God and follow Him, then we can take comfort in the fact that He is a good God and He will bless us in this life and the life to come.

Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; but his delight is in the law of the LORD, and on his law he meditates day and night. He is like a tree planted by streams of water that yields its fruit in its season, and its leaf does not wither. In all that he does, he prospers. The wicked are not so, but are like chaff that the wind drives away. Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous; for the LORD knows the way of the righteous, but the way of the wicked will perish.
(Psalm 1)

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