My husband, Bert, loves to greet people with a huge smile and a cheerful, “How you livin’?” His question (although perhaps a bit grammatically incorrect) is a great one for us to consider.
How would you respond to Bert’s question?
I’m not talking about what social class you enjoy. I’m asking what return you’re receiving from the choices you’re making, especially as it relates to Romans 6:21 (ESV): “But what fruit were you getting at that time from the things of which you are now ashamed? For the end of those things is death.”
Are you where you want to be regarding your character and legacy? How are the relationships in your life? Are you enjoying peace, joy and fulfillment?
Or are your choices causing you turmoil and regret? Are you disappointed in the kind of person you’re becoming? As I write these last questions, my heart hurts. I understand what it’s like to feel distraught after losing direction and fearing you’ll never find your way back. Or worse, after years of going your own way, forgetting what “way” you’re supposed to be on.
Read Romans 6:21 again. Notice the past tense: “what fruit were you getting at that time from the things” followed by the present tense: “of which you are now ashamed.” And don’t miss the second sentence’s grim forecast for your future.
Every bad decision we made years, months, days – even minutes – ago affects us (and possibly those we share life with). We may never know how much our actions steal from us and from others around us. Choosing to obey God’s directions can be hard, but not as hard as living with the consequences of sin. This is why I’m forever thankful God is in the business of redemption. While this doesn’t mean He’ll remove the consequences of our choices, it does mean that, after we repent, we can move forward with a clean heart.
How would it change the way we live if we asked God to give us a long-term view regarding the choices we make? How different would tomorrow be if we had God’s perspective regarding today’s choices?
And if we bumped into Bert in the grocery store (or in my case, while chatting at our dinner table), how would it change the way we answered him if he greets us with his huge smile and asks, “How you livin’?”
Sheryl H. Boldt is the author of the blog, www.TodayCanBeDifferent.net. You can reach her at SherylHBoldt@gmail.com