Reading: Deuteronomy 30: 15-20
As the Hebrews stand on the edge of the Promised Land, they face a whole new life. It is a life unlike any they have known or heard about. It is a life that contains options, choices, freedom. All of the stories they heard as children were of slavery in Egypt and of God’s redemption. As slaves, the people had to follow Pharaoh’s orders or they died. Even when God redeemed them and Moses led them out of Egypt, they were ‘free’ but we’re very dependant on God. They wandered for forty years in the vast desert, dependant on God for everything. On the occasions when they tested out freedom, like when they built and worshipped the golden calf, the consequences were dire.
What lay ahead was the land of milk and honey. The land would provide their food. The toil of their own hands would also play a role in what seemed to produce the crops. Instead of being the only people isolated together in the desert, now rheyb would live in and amongst many different tribes. Each of these tribes brought and offered choices. Who to fight with, who to intermarry with? Who to shun as outsiders, whobto kneel beside at the altar to an idol? The Hebrews entered a new land flush with choices and freedoms.
We too live in a land flush with choices and freedom. We too live as aliens amongst many different tribes. Not only this, but we live in a world of tolerance and acceptance. The ‘just do it’ and do whatever you need to to find success mentalities are poor examples of these good ideals. And to add to this, the list of what our culture idolizes is long. It is a tough time and place to be a devout Christian.
Each day, we too face the choice that Moses presented to the Hebrews: choose life through God or choose death through the world. When we choose God, we are choosing the narrow road. Our choices are not unlimited but are bound by God. All of our choices and decisions must be filtered through lens of ‘What is God’s will in this’? How we speak, act, and do must also be aligned with God’s will. When we choose life through God we are choosing life in Christ. When our choice is Jesus and we choose to declare Him the Lord of our life, we hand it all over to Him, surrendering all that we are. When we choose life in Christ, we are choosing to become slaves to His love, hope, mercy, compassion, … And what a life of freedom it is! There is a choice to be made. What is your choice?