In the season finale of 24, President Allison Taylor was faced with a pretty difficult decision - I'll spare you the drama of 22 weeks and an otherwise unwelcome cheesy impersonation of Keifer Sutherland saying, "Previously on 24" but the scenario is this: what is best as a Mother isn't what's best as the President. Does she condemn her only daughter or cover up the crime. Her husband begged her to do the latter.
My wife asked me the question. "What would you do in that situation?"
Initially, I said that I believe in life, each decision we face comes with increasing difficulty, but its our maturity and progression in life that gives us the tools necessary to make the best decision possible. You wouldn't expect a 5 year old to answer correctly on an Algebra test, but you would expect a correct answer from a high school senior. I said, "If I were the President, I'd be prepared to make that decision, but I'm not, so I can't."
But the more I thought about it, the more I wished I could answer the question again.
My wife and I truly live a blessed life. I'm constantly telling people that it feels like I've fallen face first into the blessings of God. It seems totally unexpected and completely by accident.
But that's not entirely true.
Let me state it another way. I've married THE most incredible woman. She's smart, caring, honest, hard-working, patient, and is becoming the exact woman that I want my kids to grow up to emulate. I chose her. Without a doubt, besides my salvation, the single most important decision that I will ever make. Yup, one big decision - make it or break it; can't be undone - and I chose well. That might be what you'd say,
But that's not entirely true, either.
I'm not the first one to jump on the revelation train as it pulls into the station, but I have figured this one out:
Every big decision can be made correctly, by making the correct smaller decisions. The decision on the kind of person I'd like to become [huge] can be correctly made by the smaller decision of who I choose to hang around and spend my time with... and so on.
Just like sowing and reaping. We all know what the Bible says about sowing and reaping, even if you didn't know it was the Bible where it all came from. Basically, it says it like this. Whatever a man sows [plants, does, acts upon, instigates, decides, etc] he will also reap [harvest, receive, happen, have opportunity for, etc]. By sowing small correct decisions, I had positioned myself for making a the really big ones correctly.
I chose personal discipleship - I understood God never intended for me to live out my Christianity alone. Every player needs a coach. If I wanted to be successful in life, I needed to submit myself to others who are further along in the race I was running. When I first started to be attracted to Kayla, I immediately sought counsel of my pastor.
I chose spiritual authority - I had to put away the "God told me to" Trump Card. Yes, God speaks to me. But I hear a lot of other things in my head, too. I've missed it before. I believe that God speaks to me in three ways: His voice, His people, and His word. I take what I hear and compare it to what God has said (His word) and to seek Godly counsel (His people). Even if I did hear right, the other two always help me carry out what it is I heard. I submitted our relationship early on to the inspection of my pastor.
I chose to protect my heart - Proverbs 3 said that if I trusted in the Lord and not on my own heart [will and emotions] that He would direct my path. Proverbs 4 said that it was important to guard my heart because out of it flowed the "issues" of life. I understood that to mean that the people that didn't guard their heart have "issues." I kept myself from those situations where I knew I wasn't very strong and could easily be compromised.
I chose to protect her heart - The easy part would have been just to flirt with her and see if she like me or not. Would have made things a lot easier. But what if it wasn't God? What if I just thought that she was the one because she was fine and made me laugh? What if I started to favor her and single her out only to find out that she did liked me too? What if she started to like me and what if I later found out it was hormones and emotions and not God's will? Until I knew for sure that God had spoken - until I had submitted my heart to my spiritual authority - I didn't let her know I liked her. She had no idea until I was certain she was the one that God hand picked for me.
All of those smaller decisions positioned me for the larger decision that was to follow. I chose well on the big one because I chose well on the smaller, easier, safer ones. I sowed wise decisions and reaped a wise decision from what I had learned.
If you will chose correctly when it doesn't count, it will be much easier to choose correctly when it does.