When it gets down to it, you just can't escape the importance of good decision-making. I meet with countless people facing a variety of issues in life from their own bad choices to the damaging effects of another's choices. In every case, there is a point where the individual has to decide differently to see change happen. Life truly is in the choices we make.
I believe good decision-making creates momentum in our lives. With each good decision, we see a little more of the wisdom in making the next good decision. I also believe the reverse of this principle is true. There is momentum in bad decisions. However, with bad decisions, I firmly believe the wind is at your back! The momentum of bad decision-making is exponentially greater than the momentum of good decisions. It's almost like this world is eager to help those who make bad decisions. This is why making a change in our lives can be so hard. In the early phases of any life-change, from starting a diet or fitness routine, choosing a spiritual discipline like prayer and fasting or simply treating your spouse better, it seems so much harder at the beginning. However, with each good decision, your mind and body, which are undeniably bent toward bad decisions, get a glimpse that this really could be a good thing.
So, the battle begins. In my experience in helping people through some of life's most challenging issues, I see a predictable pattern. After that first good decision toward a given life-change comes a false sense of achievement that convinces them to reward the good decision with "freedom" to make a bad decision. It plays out so clearly when someone decides to "get in shape." They muster up the discipline to go to the gym. Later that evening, in the euphoria of making this change, they "reward" themselves with permission to eat junk. Why? Don't they know eating junk is counter-productive to their goal? Yes, they do, but their nature is bent toward bad decision-making. This often happens in church life when someone has a "spiritual high" moment. They feel closer to God than ever. What comes next is predictable. A few weeks or months later, they are right back to their old ways. Why? Was their "God experience" not real? I think in many cases it is very real, but again, the gravitational pull back to our old ways is a difficult pattern to break.
LIfe-change is hard. We need lots of faith but also the die hard commitment to make the next good decision. You will find that with every good decision you string together you gain momentum in your growth. Given time the good decisions do get easier. Momentum will begin to favor you. Where do you want or need to see change in your life? It starts today with one good decision.
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