Certainly, you’re familiar with this phrase, “Where there’s a will, there’s a way.”
It speaks to the power of our will and intellect to persevere in trouble, to carry on , press forward, forge a way around an obstacle, go the distance, stay the course, stand firm, and to determinedly leave no stone left unturned in our quest for the discovery and achievement of our highest goals.
It’s called “free will” because God allows us to exercise this gift in the manner of our own choosing. I Wonder, does the idea of free will amaze or confound you, or both? Imagine the leader of an army suiting you up and equipping you for warfare and then saying, “You can fight for me or fight for the enemy…it’s your choice.” Or try to conjure up the image of a businessman who hires employees and tells them they are free to work for and give trade secrets to the competition. Imagine a major league ball pitcher who deliberately throws away a pitch allowing the other team to score the winning run. Absurd, isn’t it? It seems to us that giving us free will would be a horrible strategy to waging war, building a business, or winning the game.
But as we all know (though often argue against), God’s ways ARE higher than ours. His economy is different from ours. It fits in with his paradoxical view of the first being last and finding strength in weakness. He could have made us to be worship robots who were obliged to obey his every command. Maybe you’ve sometimes asked him to do to just that. “Take away my selfish thoughts or this persistent sin and MAKE me wholly yours, O Lord!” Instead he gives us the choice to go his way or our own. Whether it’s in choosing a president or choosing the bed where we lie down, God lets us “have it our way” if we insist on that course of action.
And what an incredible gift that is! The gift of free will also allows me the power to see things differently and rise above my circumstances. It gives me a new perspective. I didn’t get to choose whether or not cancer came to my door, but I do get to choose how I respond to it. You have the same choice. See a problem or see an opportunity, not only to accomplish something or persevere through a tough situation. More than that, every problem is an opportunity to trust God.
We can choose to trust God or ignore him, follow his proven ways or venture off on our own prideful paths, find peace in all circumstances or choose to live in turmoil and anxiety. We can choose our own destiny including where we spend eternity and how much victory we want to experience in this life. We make hundreds of choices every single day that either affirm our faith in God and the good will he freely offers or to deny God’s purposeful and benevolent involvement in our lives – to “have it my way” or follow The Way, the Truth, and the Life.
Choose wisely, my friend. Give Jesus a chance to shape your will to look like his.