July 16, 2018
Weekly Reflection – Making Life Choices
Making life choices is a big responsibility. Recently, my 12-year-old granddaughter came to visit her Grandpa. We are always delighted when she or either of her two siblings can be with us. As we enjoyed our time together, she shared how another adult lectured her on how unscriptural it is to get a tattoo. She said it was not much of an issue for her as she would not desire one anyway.
In any case, this caused me to reflect on how many decisions a young person is called on to make as they form their view of what is right or wrong, how they will live their lives. These range from matters common to all, to those that are unique to the individual. And they are made within the context of the family and culture to which one belongs.
After a while, I asked if I could make a few suggestions, actually three suggestions that she could use to make these decisions. These were:
1. The Good Book (properly interpreted) is still the best book. So, what does the Bible say about the issue? “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.”
2. The nature of man has really not changed over the centuries. Ask yourself what mankind has generally regarded to be the best way of behaving on any particular matter. Do not get trapped into joining the latest revolution or fad if it deviates very far from traditionally approved behavior.
3. What does science say? Sometimes we have to shift our paradigms when, for example, science clearly shows that the world is round and not flat.
Then, most importantly, can you form a decision that is consistent with all three of these points? Is it compatible with the Bible? Has it been sanctioned over many centuries? Does it match scientific knowledge? If one reaches a decision that fits this model, it will probably serve him or her well. This suggests that one must also study to know what the Bible teaches, what society has sanctioned, and what science says. This is “life skill” wisdom knowledge! Without it, one is likely to make bad choices.
Here is an example. The Bible, most cultures over time, and science all agree that the traditional family of man, woman, and children is the most effective way to function. While there will always be exceptions, in recent times, there has been increasing acceptance in the West of single-parent families, sex outside of marriage, and children that are raised/guided by others rather than their parents and extended family. This is leading to some very unpleasant social issues. One would be wise to base their life on the traditional model.
Another example might be fads, such as recreational drugs or tattoos. Sure, one might be able to get away with a bit of it but science, the Bible and society would all agree that it is wiser to stay away from these and other ways of behaving that are harmful to the body and mind. Just do not do it!
Finally, my personal experience is that whenever I step outside the framework of these three points, it invariably fails to work out as I might have wished. Think about this, and have a great week!
Blessings and peace,
Read the reflection, First Things First