“I call on heaven and earth to witness against you today
that I have presented you with life and death, the blessing and the curse.
Therefore, choose life, so that you will live, you and your descendants,
loving Adonai your God,
paying attention to what he says and clinging to him —
for that is the purpose of your life!
Complete Jewish Bible
I was re-reading this in the past few days and was reminded of a huge “aha moment” in my life several years ago. I was driving along Highway 401 in Ontario to visit my family because my Dad was dying with cancer. Obviously, it was a very difficult time. I had to choose what I was going to believe about God in the midst of the real-life experience of pain and loss.
This verse came to mind. I immediately saw an image of Eve with the choice before her of life and death. What I heard in that moment was Eve could choose to trust God’s heart for her and what He had told her = life; or, she could choose to believe that God did not have her best interest at heart and that He was holding out on her. We all know Eve’s choice.
When I saw it in the light of life and death being equal to whether I trust God’s heart or I don’t trust His heart for me all these bells and whistles went off “Alert, alert, alert …. anything but choosing to trust the heart of God for me leads to death.”
That makes things pretty simple doesn’t it. It’s another one of those “litmus tests” that we can use to navigate our lives when, for whatever reason, the road before us seems hard to discern [be it emotional or physical pain, addiction, loss, betrayal, rejection, illness, financial problems – insert your challenge here].
It’s no different in the spiritual than in the natural – when you can’t discern the road in front of you, STOP. Put your hand on your heart and ask do I trust You in this moment Father or do I believe You are holding out on me? This is exactly what He wants You to do. How do I know that? Because guarding our heart is exactly what He tells us to do in Proverbs 4:23 “Above everything else, guard your heart; for it is the source of life’s consequences.” Why is it so important to God for us to guard our hearts? Because He knows our enemy is prowling around for whom he can devour (1 Peter 5:8). Think of it like checking your tires to be sure they are inflated properly.
God won’t be angry because You are asking this question. He will be delighted to reveal your own heart to You; to show you any doubts you may have about Him and why you have them so that the 2 of you can deal with them (Isaiah 1:18). To go along with that He wants to reveal Himself and His heart for You. What might that be? Glad you asked 🙂
Yes, I have loved you with an everlasting love;
therefore with loving-kindness have I drawn you
and continued My faithfulness to you.
Why would He want to do all this? In order that without hesitation you can choose to trust His Heart for you; i.e., to choose life and to live out your purpose of being filled with life as You love Him and He loves you.
After all that is why He sent Jesus, so that none should perish but have eternal life (John 3:16) and so that we may enjoy life, and have it in abundance, to the full, till it overflows. (John 10:10). I’m thinking that sounds like someone who only wants the best for me and for you, someone each of us can trust. What do you think?
The choice is mine and the choice is yours. Like the knight from the movie Indiana Jones And The Last Crusade said “choose wisely” 🙂