Choices, Excuses, and Consequences

Choices Have Eternal Consequences

Choose the Way of Love
Choose the Way of Love

My Foot's On the Rock (Christ) -

Choices are the hinges of destiny

Pythagoras said that choices are the hinges of destiny. This present article is a short devotional study into the choices we make.  I will look at their importance and their consequences.  I pray the reader will glean better decision making tools from this hub.

The story is told by former President Ronald Reagan. I do not know if this story is true, but it illustrates the value of choosing. Former President Ronald Reagan said he learned the must for decision making early in years. An aunt had taken him to a cobbler to have a pair of shoes prepared for him. The shoemaker asked young Ronald, "Do you want a square toe or a round toe?" Reagan hesitated and waivered. So the cobbler said, "Take a day or two and let me know what you want." A few days later the shoemaker sees Reagan on the street and asks him his decision. "I still haven't made up my mind," the young Reagan answers. "OK," said the cobbler. When the boy receives the shoes, he is stunned to see that one shoe has a square toe and the other a round toe. "Gazing at those shoes every day taught me a lesson," said Reagan years later. "If you don't make your own decisions, they will be made for you!”

There was once a college student. His name was Stephen but his ‘friends’ called him, “Spike.” They nicknamed him this because the young man was anything but wild. His friends took it upon themselves to adjust and transform him into this preferred image. “We will make a ‘Spike’ out of him!” They scoffed with childish laughter. These friends set out to rain a menagerie of practical jokes upon Stephen. For examples, they filled the entrance door of his dorm room with dead crickets; they made 100’s of prank phone calls to his room; they fed him homespun, bad advice daily; the list of tomfoolery was day after day torture, ill timed, in bad taste, juvenile all the way. However, Spike was always a good sport, and the better he took it the more determined the conspirators became! Late one night, his delinquent friends jammed his door shut. They hoped he could not escape and would have to miss class the next morning. They wanted to hear him make excuse to the professor. They were as anxious as grade shoolers awaiting recess. However, to their surprise Spike was in class the next morning, and on time. How did he do it? He jumped out his window, a very high window. Why did he do it? He had made up his mind that school was more important than having an excuse. He was determined.

I see a lot of Christians this way. They are at church nearly every service. They have made up their minds to put God first. Their decision builds great testimonies over time. My dad was this way, and I owe part of my love for church due to his decision!

And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD. Joshua 24:15 (KJV)

Joshua challenges the people. They have to make up their minds. Are we going to serve God or not? I see a lot of unhappy church goers. I ask why. How can this be with those who are supposedly Christians? The answer comes to me. The light switch of my mind comes on and I realize that they have not truly set their minds to serve and put God first. When I really identify, “I am a child of God,” then I have an eternal joy unspeakable.

And Lot lifted up his eyes, and beheld all the plain of Jordan, that it was well watered everywhere, before the LORD destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah, even as the garden of the LORD, like the land of Egypt, as thou comest unto Zoar. (11) Then Lot chose him all the plain of Jordan; and Lot journeyed east: and they separated themselves the one from the other. (12) Abram dwelled in the land of Canaan, and Lot dwelled in the cities of the plain, and pitched his tent toward Sodom. Genesis 13:10-12 (KJV)

Lot is Abraham’s nephew. In their travels together both grow quite wealthy (Genesis 13:2-5). Because of their combined assets, both were forced to separate (Gen 13:6-9). Lot is given the choice of land and direction. He makes a choice and it seems at the time to be a good one. However, it resulted in much sorrow and hardship! This is why we seek God. Daily decisions often bring eternal consequences! Lot makes a choice. He does not appreciate the outcome and consequences of his decision. He looks to the easier path rather than the best path.

A peacefulness follows any decision, even the wrong one . ~Rita Mae Brown

I am sure that Lot felt at peace with his decision. He had no intention of indulging in the debauchery of Sodom. He only wanted to pitch his tent toward that den. He made the decision at once and by sight. Our decisions are often made in this manner. Christians need to seek God in all our decisions.

Life is the sum of all your choices. ~Albert Camus

Look at how Lot suffered from the choice he made:

  • · He suffered war: Genesis 14:11 2.
  • · He was Kidnapped - Genesis 14:12 3.
  • · He endured oppression and torment by the citizens of Sodom - 2 Peter 2:7-8; cf. Gen 19:1-11 4.
  • · He lost his material wealth - Gen 19:15-16,24-25 5.
  • · He witnessed the death of his wife - Gen 19:17,26 6.
  • · He suffered the shame of incest with his daughters - Gen 19:30-36 –

Lot disdained the sins of Sodom, and, because of this, he was referred to as a righteous Person- cf. 2 Peter 2:7-8. However, this is purely God’s mercy and grace (even as with us today). We are all righteous by grace. Nevertheless, choices have eternal consequences.

OUR CHOICES

Five of the greatest choices that greatly affect our lives, our futures, our family, our friends, our eternity:

1. The greatest choice you can make is to follow Jesus. This is the path to both eternal life and abundant life in the here and now.

2. Choosing your CAREER. This decision has a lasting effect upon your marriage, family, and your service to God.

3. Choosing your life MATE. There is something worse than being alone, being with the wrong person. Also, make no mistake, marriage has eternal implications. Divorce cannot simply erase a bad decision. There are financial, family, children, reputation loss or gain, plus other consequences. Pray my friend; do not be swayed simply by your emotions!

4. Selecting your FRIENDS. You will be known by the friends you have.

A friend loveth at all times, and a brother is born for adversity. Proverbs 17:17 (KJV)

The righteous is more excellent than his neighbor: but the way of the wicked seduceth them . Proverbs 12:26 (KJV)

5. Choosing WHERE YOU WILL LIVE. Will you pitch your tent toward Sodom?

Pray! It never hurts to ask God for guidance. Whatever, a Christian does it should be with the Lord’s guidance in your mind. Caution: You will make wrong decisions in life. It is inevitable; you are not perfect. Don’t despair, but use this experience to try to get back on track!

A youthful man of 32 had been selected president of the bank. He'd never imagined he'd be president, especially at such a young age. So he sought the honored Chairman of the Board and said, "You know, I've just been appointed President. I was speculating if you could give me some advice." The old man quickly responded with just two words: "Right decisions!" The young man had anticipated a bit more than this, so he said, "That's really helpful, and I am thankful, but can you be more precise? How do I make right decisions?" The shrewd old man simply reacted, "Experience." The young man said, "Well, that's just why I am here. I don't have the kind of know-how I need. How do I get it?" Came the brusque reply, "Wrong decisions!"

Be quick to repent, stay determined, and forgive yourself. God can turn bad into good. However, know that many consequences of bad choices in life, YOU WILL HAVE TO LIVE WITH! "Remember Lot" the next time you face an important decision.


Put Your Feet on the Rock (Christ)

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Comments 12 comments

Gicky Soriano profile image

Gicky Soriano 7 years ago from California

Great hub! I especially like the story of young Reagan. Yes, life consists of the sum of your choices. You choose one end of the stick only to realize that you've chosen the other. Keep it coming Pastor Walt.


Pastor_Walt profile image

Pastor_Walt 7 years ago from Jefferson City, Tennessee Author

Thanks for the comment, Gicky.

My main purpose is to encourage Christians to seek God first in all their major decisions.


febriedethan profile image

febriedethan 7 years ago from Indonesia

Thank's for this wonderful hub Pastor, you are right every choice we take determine our next life. I have made a good choice to put my trust on Jesus and I never regret it :)

God Bless You Pastor


Sciantel 7 years ago

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no body profile image

no body 7 years ago from Rochester, New York

Consequences of the decisions we make can be dire. Thank God He is a God of second chances and after we learn our lesson He very often brings us back to the very decision that changed us and lets us do it again. What an awesome God.


ftgfmom 7 years ago

Awesome lesson and so true. Thank you.


Pastor_Walt profile image

Pastor_Walt 7 years ago from Jefferson City, Tennessee Author

ftgfmom

Thanks and God bless1


Excuses, Failure Quotes "Excuses are tools of the incompetent, and those who specialize in them seldom go far." Excuses are tools of the incompetent used to build monuments to nothing. For those  7 years ago

Excuses, Failure Quotes

"Excuses are tools of the incompetent, and those who specialize in them seldom go far."

Excuses are tools of the incompetent used to build monuments to nothing. For those who specialize in them shall never be good at anything else."

An excuse is worse than a lie, for an excuse is a lie, guarded. Alexander Pope

Bad excuses are worse than none. Thomas Fuller

Don't make excuses, make good. Elbert Hubbard

Every vice has its excuse ready. Publilius Syrus

He that is good for making excuses is seldom good for anything else. Benjamin Franklin

He who excuses himself, accuses himself. Gabriel Meurier

Hold yourself responsible for a higher standard than anybody else expects of you, never excuse yourself. Henry Ward Beecher

If you don't want to do something, one excuse is as good as another. Yiddish Proverb

Nothing is impossible; there are ways that lead to everything, and if we had sufficient will we should always have sufficient means. It is often merely for an excuse that we say things are impossible. Francois De La Rochefoucauld

The best job goes to the person who can get it done without passing the buck or coming back with excuses. Napoleon Hill

Two wrongs don't make a right, but they make a good excuse. Thomas Szasz

We are all manufacturers. Making good, making trouble, or making excuses. H. V. Adolt

We have forty million reasons for failure, but not a single excuse. Rudyard Kipling

There aren't nearly enough crutches in the world for all the lame excuses. Marcus Stroup

Excuses are the nails used to build a house of failure. Don Wilder

Difficulty is the excuse history never accepts. Edward R. Murrow

It is better to offer no excuse than a bad one. George Washington

We are all manufacturers. Making good, making trouble, or making excuses. H. V. Adolt

He who excuses himself accuses himself. Gabriel Meurier

The real man is one who always finds excuses for others, but never excuses himself.Henry Ward Beecher

People with integrity do what they say they are going to do. Others have excuses. Laura Schlessinger

For many people, an excuse is better than an achievement because an achievement, no matter how great, leaves you having to prove yourself again in the future; but an excuse can last for life. Eric Hoffer

Several excuses are always less convincing than one. Aldous Huxley

The trick is not how much pain you feel but how much joy you feel. Any idiot can feel pain. Life is full of excuses to feel pain, excuses not to live; excuses, excuses, excuses. Erica Jong

It is easier to find an excuse than to find a reason. Doug Brown

I attribute my success to this: I never gave or took an excuse. Florence Nightingale

Don't make excuses, make good. Elbert Hubbard

There's a difference between interest and commitment. When you're interested in doing something, you do it only when circumstance permit. When you're committed to something, you accept no excuses, only results. Art Turock

Ninety-nine percent of the failures come from people who have the habit of making excuses. George Washington Carver

You can give in to the failure messages and be a bitter deadbeat of excuses. Or you can choose to be happy and positive and excited about life. A.L. Williams

Difficulty is the excuse history never accepts. Edward R. Murrow

He who excuses himself accuses himself. Gabriel Meurier

An excuse is worse and more terrible than a lie; for an excuse is a lie guarded. Alexander Pope

Excuses are the nails used to build a house of failure. Don Wilder

Ninety-nine percent of the failures come from people who have the habit of making excuses. George Washington Carver

There aren't nearly enough crutches in the world for all the lame excuses. Marcus Stroup

People are always blaming their circumstances for what they are. I don't believe in circumstances. The people who get on in this world are the people who get up and look for the circumstances they want, and, if they can't find them, make them." George Bernard Shaw

Never ruin an apology with an excuse. Kimberly Johnson

Uncalled for excuses are practical confessions. Charles Simmons

"Don't look for excuses to lose. Look for excuses to win." Chi Chi Rodriguez

“Love will find a way. Indifference will find an excuse.”

“Good taste is the excuse I've always given for leading such a bad life” Oscar Wilde

“Bad things are always going to happen in life. People will hurt you. But you can't use that as an excuse to fail or to hurt someone back. You'll only hurt yourself.”

“Man gives every reason for his conduct save one, every excuse for his crimes save one, every plea for his safety save one; and that one is his cowardice” George Bernard Shaw

“There's no excuse to be bored. Sad, yes. Angry, yes. Depressed, yes. Crazy, yes. But there's no excuse for boredom, ever.” Karolvig Viggo Mortensen

“Pessimism is an excuse for not trying and a guarantee to a personal failure.” Bill Clinton

“We have more ability than will power, and it is often an excuse to ourselves that we imagine that things are impossible.” François de la Rochefoucauld

“Smokers, male and female, inject and excuse idleness in their lives every time they light a cigarette.” Sidonie Gabrielle Colette

“Destiny: A tyrant's authority for crime and a fool's excuse for failure.” Ambrose Bierce

“Every man ought to be inquisitive through every hour of his great adventure down to the day when he shall no longer cast a shadow in the sun. For if he dies without a question in his heart, what excuse is there for his continuance?” Frank Moore Colby


DeBorrah K. Ogans profile image

DeBorrah K. Ogans 7 years ago

Pastor_Walt

This is a Great Hub! I so love the example you used of Ronald Reagan. It is so True. There are consequences for the choices we make.

I decided some time ago to follow Jesus and seek Him above all other. Whatever consequences come because of that; I know and through FAITH am confident He will see me through! I THANK & PRAISE GOD from who "ALL Blessings flow...."

Blessings


bayareagreatthing profile image

bayareagreatthing 7 years ago from Bay Area California

Pastor Walt- such a simple topic with such great consequence. It's funny- I was just thinking yesterday about the choices Lot made in his life and there it was on your Hub! So many things we do have consequences that we have to bear...I am so thankful I don't always get what I deserve from the choices I have made. Somehow, I have been shown grace in my life. That has made me much more appreciative and gracious to others!


billyaustindillon profile image

billyaustindillon 6 years ago

Life is all about choices and of responsibility. Sadly many in the world feel a sense of entitlement and the choices they make reflect this. With that the consequences are never avoided whilst they think they maybe - we have seen the fallout from this dramatically overt he past few years or so.


billy is awsome 4 years ago

life is all about u!!!!!!!!:)

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