Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Where will your choices lead?

It seems like death has been everywhere lately. From my sister-in-law's mom to a local teacher to multiple interviewees' family members to co-workers' family members to my cousin.

A cousin of mine passed away recently after going to the hospital, complaining of pain, receiving a bottle of pills and taking them all.

She had struggled with drugs off and on for many years and even had her son taken away due to the troubles. She didn't keep in contact much with her family, and news of her death was only passed to her father and son through the grapevine.

Although your first instinct might be to think that she made bad choices, and that's where it led her, it's also heartbreaking to think that I'm no better. I make bad choices. I'm just blessed that I have family members and friends who keep me on the straight and narrow. I have people to tell me when I mess up. Most of all, I have the Holy Spirit inside me to convict me when I do something wrong.

Without the Holy Spirit in me, I know that my first priority would be my own happiness. If I wasn't feeling happy, I would try to get that feeling in the quickest, easiest way. For many people, the answer is drugs, alcohol, sex, food. Consequences be damned, you just want to do what feels good in the moment.

Thanks to a convicting spirit inside me, I notice - most of the time - when my selfish tendencies start creeping up. Then I try to think of the people around me instead of myself. I hope that someday it will become a habit and I will no longer have to think about putting others before myself. For now though, I'm a work in progress.

People have to remember that choices have consequences. The bad might not hit right away. It might seem OK to "have some fun" when you're not getting caught. However, if you're walking down the wrong path, you will probably end up in a forest deeper and darker than you expected.

God is right there, waiting for you to turn to him and let him lead you to a much better place where your own selfish desires don't get in the way.

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