Every single day I make a choice. I wake up, move forward into the day, and I choose HOW I am going to be in the world.
I choose the kind of person I am going to be.
I decide who and what I am going to include in my life.
I choose what/ who I am going to allow close and what/who has no place.
We each have a thousand different decisions to make each day. These decisions add or subtract to who we are and HOW we are in this life. No matter which season you happen to be in at this time you always have a choice.
There are choices that we make daily. We choose what we will speak, how we will approach, and how we will navigate every situation we encounter. Daily we choose: how to be married, how to be single, how we parent, how to love, how to discipline, how to make peace, how to deal with conflict.
We make choices about how we will engage the families that we have been given in the lives we are daily living.
Our daily choices matter.
- I make a choice about how I am going to approach my husband.
- I make a choice about how I am going to treat my children.
- I make a choice about how I will speak about those around me… my parents, my boss, my pastor, my friends, my coworkers.
- I make a choice about how I will write, what I will write about, and how I will put forth those stories into the world.
I make a choice daily about how I am going to represent the members of my family to the world. We belong to one another. I make a choice about how I will speak, what I say about the members of my family to other people. I make a choice about the stories I am going to share and the things about us that I will keep close to the chest.
I make a daily choice to spread negativity because I need someone to like me better or more allowing my insecurities to rule what I bring to the world.
Or I can choose to be content in the space in which I have been given.
You Always Have a Choice
I had the opportunity to get to know an individual whose only frame of reference about me was people we knew in common. He had never interacted with me before for any extended period of time. The only things that he knew about me were how this one group of people talked about me.
After spending time together he shared how surprised he was at who I was.
Based on one very narrow view he had been led to believe that I was a list of things that did not even look like the me he had come to know.
There was a great big disconnect between what one group believed and what was true.
I was grateful for the opportunity to speak truth and me into this space for him… a truth I did not even know in the beginning that he needed to see.
At the time I had not realized HOW I was being represented.
This situation was a grand epiphany for my much younger self: There are places where who you are, how you are, what you are – your story, your truth… there are places where that is safe. And there are places where you are not safe – where people will use us – where you are a pawn in the game they are playing. Someone they need to get them what they can not get on their own. Learn
I learned the difference the hard way – bits and pieces of truth flooding into my life. Piece upon piece eye opening and heartbreaking.
It made me realize that no matter how hard we try to live honestly and authentically some people will only see in us what they want to see.
Some people will only see in you what they need to see. And that is there choice.
They DO have a choice.
That is not about you – that is about them.
Be brave enough to live your truth – no matter what choices others make.
The choices we make have the opportunity to bring an abundance of love and encouragement where we are daily discovering who we are – who are the people in my family and community and life – And how can I help others and myself to live as authentically as possible.
How can I speak authenticity into the lives of others?
And how can I daily choose to represent the ones I have been given honestly to a watching world.
Because You Always Have a Choice.
Thoughts to Ponder on the Porch
- Have you ever experienced a situation where who you are was completely misrepresented by other people?
- How did you handle it? Did you speak up? Did you remain silent? Did you stew with anger? Did you confront?
- How do you find yourself responding when you feel like you have no choice? no voice?
- What are some specific situations that were beyond your control? How did you react?
- Name three wise decisions you have made – things that show who you really are.
- Name three decisions you would do differently if you could?
- How does the wise choices and the failings both inform your life moving forward? Where have you learned the biggest lessons?
- Do you find yourself over apologizing for your life? Consider the following poem from Mary Oliver:
- “You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
for a hundred miles through the desert, repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.
Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain
are moving across the landscapes,
over the prairies and the deep trees,
the mountains and the rivers.
Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,
are heading home again.
Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
the world offers itself to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting –
over and over announcing your place
in the family of things.”
― Mary Oliver