At some point I should really dig in and argue this from the Word, but for today I am simply going to state to an indifferent world that will probably never read this: "It matters!!!"
I had a really major decision to make at the end of last year (doesn't that make it sound so far away? yah, it was like a month ago...) :) So I did what you do when you have a major decision to make. I prayed. I fasted. I waited on the Lord. I sought wise counsel. (I may have gone overboard with that bit, but I appreciated the international response.) :) And it all lined up, and I learned a lot about who God is and who He's called me to be and what He's called me to do with my life - and came away from the whole process with a lot of really good questions to think over, a little more wisdom, and a solid direction in which to head off. All in all it was a terrific, though emotional experience. It was a major decision - we're talking life-altering, changing the trajectory of the object in motion (which means it's going to hit a different target) - and it was a decision that affected a lot of people. It wasn't like making a decision about what you have for lunch - tho anyone who's had food poisoning will tell you those decisions matter too! :) This mattered....
And someone told me it didn't. Man, has that been bugging me. I don't know why. I wish I could have just written it off as bad advice, but I haven't. So maybe just venting about it will help? :) The thing is, I know that there are times and moments in our lives when it really doesn't matter what we choose, and that some of those decisions are life-altering. Years ago that feel like yesterday, I quit my job and moved to Colorado to be an assistant chaplain at a camp in the mountains. I won't go into detail about what made it not the greatest experience in the world, but I will say that it was hard. It was really hard. And I was miserable, and I didn't know what to do. So I sought counsel, and across the board, the advice was: "God can use you and teach you a lot if you choose to stay. It will be hard, but it will be good. But if you choose to come home, no one will think you're a failure. Just choose." And as I prayed and hiked, the sense really was, "Hap, this is your decision. You tell Me what you want to do." So I went home. In some ways I regret it some days - but really, I don't. I'd like to go back now that I'm older and have that job again for a summer. Maybe someday. :) I feel a lot more... equipped ... to do that job now. Yay, there's something happy about getting old... :)
But this time - this decision - it wasn't like that. There was a very definite right and wrong path and I almost took the wrong one, the safe one, the one that would have been just okay, but that would not have led to everything God wants to lead me to - except that God sent the proverbial neon signs to say, "No. This is the way. Walk in it." And it mattered. It mattered to me, it mattered to a lot of people, and it mattered to my destiny. I can't tell you why I know that to be true. I just do.
"It doesn't matter. Do what you want, and God will bless it." What??? Even in the moments when that might be true, I'm not sure it's the kind of philosophy on which I want to build my life or by which I want to make decisions. It's a shaky foundation that if you take it to its logical conclusions gives you the right to be master and commander of your own fate and to do whatever you feel like doing whenever you feel like doing it....yikes.
No. It matters. Even on those occasions when God says, "choose" - it still matters.