Quietude®

Resources & Gifts for Christian Faith & Life

Choose Life

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I was surprised recently when a woman I’ve long thought of as sprightly and exuberant told me in hushed tones that she had given up on life many years ago. She told me that although she continued to live, she found no joy in it; she was “just getting on with it.” Hers was the story of many. Some place along the way, after experiencing enough disappointments, hurts and setbacks she decided there was really no point in hoping for anything because life was just one big uncontrollable mess that would go whichever way it went. So, she chose to disengage, and in so choosing, she made a life or death decision–she would simply breathe until the day her body stopped.

Human life, however, is inherently about more than just breathing. Our complexity and the dignity given us ensures this. For us, the goal is “abundant life” (Jn. 10:10), the kind that David described in Psalm 23 that involves “green pastures,” “still waters,” being led in “paths of righteousness,” and not being afraid when walking through dark places. This type of life involves hoping, dreaming, reaching, winning, losing, falling, getting up and doing it all over again. Sure, it can be exhausting, but disengaging is a much worse alternative. The latter leads to a tormenting empty ghost-like existence in which one is present but not really. If you are at life’s crossroads today, feeling exhausted and need to make a choice, do yourself a favor and choose life.

“Today I have given you the choice between life and death, between blessings and curses. Now I call on heaven and earth to witness the choice you make. Oh, that you would choose life, so that you and your descendants might live!” Deut. 30:19

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