“I have set before you life and death… Choose life.”
Excerpt from Deuteronomy 30:15-20
Sometimes I do what I think best only to discover that it wasn’t the best thing to do. I try to help by doing something useful when the best help could be praying that God do what I can’t.
I can’t do a lot about a friend hurting from loss of a job, or someone in the family who drinks too much, or a son or daughter caught in a life-style I know spells trouble, a member who learns that she now has to fight a battle with breast cancer. Sometimes I can’t do much about myself. The harder I try to do what I know is best, the more that can backfire—as when trying to lose weight that’s all I can think about, or wanting to be more patient and understanding, the less patient and understanding I become with myself, not helping matters at all. W.C. Fields had a point when he said: “Try, try, try again. Then quit. No use being a [darned] fool about it.”
We can’t “choose life” if that means trying to do what we think best. As Moses makes clear, it’s not what we think best that counts. It’s what God thinks best. We’re told in today’s scripture passage that doing what’s best and “choosing life” means turning to God, trusting that blessing will be forthcoming beyond anything we can make happen.
Can I be a channel of this blessing? God can still our hearts and minds and make that so. Therefore, what I need to do is pray… continue to pray…. And get out of the way and let God do what God does… surround his people with a grace that heals from the inside out.
O God, I want to be helpful. So do you. Show me when to get out of the way and allow your love and healing compassion to flow through me…. Amen.
Grace and Peace