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Is Your Choice

I call heaven and earth today to bear witness for you
that I have placed before you  life and death,
blessing and curse; and you shall choose life…
(Deut 30:19)
Why do some people succeed in life while others fail?  You know the answer.  For the most part, folks fail because they did not do what they should have done back when they needed to do it.  They may also not be doing what they should be doing right now.

See, we all know the road to success.  Do what you must do when you must do it.   Not what you want to do.  Not when you get around to it.  Do what you must do when you must do it and the world is yours.

For some people it may mean adopting then keeping to a healthy diet from this moment.  For others it could mean doing whatever it takes right now to protect and nurture a marriage.  It could mean taking immediate and necessary steps to rid oneself of an addiction.  For many it means finding a job, finding a second job or starting a business—today!

This is all really very simple.  Do what you need to do when you need to do it.  Unfortunately, however, this simple but true formula leaves us utterly baffled by a perplexing puzzle.  If the road to success is so well marked, why do so many of us fail at so many of the things we consider truly important?

If life and death are the choices before us, who in his right mind would choose death?  What sane individual would choose curse over blessing?  Why should God need to sagely recommend that we choose life and blessing?  Who would do otherwise?

In reality, we face these choices many times each day.   Frequently the wrong path is the more appealing one.

God has put us in a world with not only physical gravity but also spiritual gravity.  Yes, it takes far more effort to climb up the stairs than down.  It takes far more effort to lift a weight than it takes to drop it.

Similarly, it is far harder to keep to a diet than it is to let oneself go.  It is far harder to stick to a project that needs doing than to abandon it for an evening’s entertainment.  It is harder to keep a marriage going than to walk away and it is harder to do one’s work when it needs to be done than it is to make excuses.

Yes, most of us know what we ought to do.  The problem is that God built a system of spiritual gravity that resists our every attempt to improve ourselves and our lives.  We should be happy about this for the same reason that weightlifters and athletes are happy that gravity exists.  Without it, everyone would be able to bench-press four hundred pounds and run a four minute mile, but these bogus accomplishments would achieve nothing.  In His kindness, God gives us opportunities to confront spiritual and moral challenges allowing us to grow and thrive.

Knowing the secret to success is far different from traveling that path.

Being aware that small actions lead to a critical finish line makes it easier to steadily move in the right direction. Choose life!

Rabbi Daniel Lapin on Thoughts Tools blog (Excerpt).

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