Tag Archives: choice

The one thing necessary

Martha “was distracted by her many tasks,” the scriptures tell us (Luke 10:38-42), and she didn’t even have Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. It’s no wonder we’re distracted today. Ask a room full of busy professionals how they feel most days and you’re likely to find that just about everyone swims in a flood of distractions, […]

Companions in the journey

Sometimes Jesus just seems cranky, like during this road trip through Samaria (Luke 9:51-62). Someone offers to follow him, and Jesus encourages him to reconsider. You’ll have no place ever again to call home, Jesus tells him, no place even to rest (vv. 57-58). Jesus invites another, who wants to honor his father, and tells […]

The choice is always ours

National Poetry Month, Day 25  //  So much depends upon our choices. “It is our choices,” J.K. Rowling wrote, “that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities.” They clarify and express our deepest values and reveal us even to ourselves. And Roy T. Bennett affirmed, “Attitude is a choice. Happiness is a […]

Choices in the wilderness

“The distresses of choice,” W.H. Auden observed, “are our chance to be blessed.” Not just any choices, mind you, but the distressing ones, the ones that test your character, define your center of values, clarify your priorities. Choices that define the world in which we live. Choices that reveal whether we’re ready for the life […]

The choice is always ours

My Aunt Ailene died last week. It was a remarkable death, not because she and I were particularly close – we weren’t; I hadn’t seen her in more than thirty years – but because she was the last of her generation in my family. I didn’t attend the funeral, but I know what would have […]

Time to saunter

“When we walk, we naturally go to the fields and woods: What would become of us, if we walked only in a garden or a mall?” wondered Henry David Thoreau (“Walking,” The Atlantic, May 1862). When I started to reread his article today, I wondered how he could sit still to write all those words […]

Decide to follow

Deciding what you want your life to be about is not particularly hard. Everyone makes that decision sometime, consciously or unconsciously. Many people, perhaps most, make it several times. What’s difficult is figuring out what you’re willing to give up for the things you really care about, what you’re willing to sacrifice for the life […]

Stepping out

In 1978 I had a moment like Saint Peter must have had when he stepped out of the boat and experienced the truth of W.H. Auden’s observation that “the distresses of choice are our chance to be blessed.” That was the year I chose to leave one publishing house and join another. It was probably […]

Another test

If Satan had worked smarter instead of harder, he might have won Jesus over (see Matthew 4:1-11). One day, one brief moment, and one modest, well-placed temptation might have done the trick. Instead, he may have overplayed his hand and in forty days of fruitless effort squandered what might have been his best opportunity. Temptation […]

The hinge of choice

During my last eye exam, the doctor told me I have the start of cataracts. It could be years before I need to do anything about them, he said, but the news was a gentle reminder of the shortness of life, the kind of reminder the psalmist prayed would lead to wisdom of heart (Ps. […]