Every day is filled with choices. Coffee or tea? Eggs or cereal? Jeans or leggings? Work or goof off? According to UNC-TV Science, people make approximately 35,000 choices every day. I can say from experience that not all of them are good ones.
Young parents tell their children to “make good choices.” Our hope for our children is that if we raise them with a firm foundation of what constitutes a good choice, they will continue to operate from that perspective all their lives. God has the same hope for us as well.
When Joshua and the nation of Israel finally arrived at their new home in the Promised Land, Joshua instructed the people to make a good choice. This was one that would determine the viability of the nation. Whether or not they would prosper or fail miserably was completely dependent on what they would choose on this day.
Joshua 24 (Common English Bible)
1 Joshua gathered all the tribes of Israel at Shechem. He summoned the elders of Israel, its leaders, judges, and officers. They presented themselves before God.
14 “So now, revere the Lord. Serve him honestly and faithfully. Put aside the gods that your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates and in Egypt and serve the Lord. 15 But if it seems wrong in your opinion to serve the Lord, then choose today whom you will serve. Choose the gods whom your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you live. But my family and I will serve the Lord.”
The time had arrived to decide. All of the little idols and gods that they had adopted along the way had to be discarded now. Would they comply?
16 Then the people answered, “God forbid that we ever leave the Lord to serve other gods!17 The Lord is our God. He is the one who brought us and our ancestors up from the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage. He has done these mighty signs in our sight. He has protected us the whole way we’ve gone and in all the nations through which we’ve passed.18 The Lord has driven out all the nations before us, including the Amorites who lived in the land.
This is a good question for us as well today. Will we let go of the false idols of celebrity, power, influencers, bad habits, self-indulgence, our own stubbornness, etc., or will we serve the Lord? It is literally a choice we need to make every day. God expects that if we choose to serve him, it will be obvious by everything ELSE we choose…especially what we choose to say, do, think, post, and how we allocate our resources.
Do your choices reflect God? Or do they reflect the world?
The people answered Joshua with sincerity. They were willing to discard every little god they had picked up along the way. They saw God’s power, heard his invitation, and decided for him.
We too will serve the Lord, because he is our God.”
How about you? Whom will you serve today? As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.