After reading and listening to news reports about Irma’s path of destruction in the Caribbean and Florida all day Sunday, I could not get to sleep. My mind would not rest. I got out of bed,  sat down in my recliner, and picked up  All My Days, a beautiful book written by my friend, Ellen Mainville.  

Ellen is a wise and gentle woman who truly walks with God. He is in her book. I highly recommend it. When I read it, his Spirit comforts me, encourages me, and gently corrects me.

On Sunday night, I read Ellen’s poetic meditation “Love is Hard.” It resonated with me. Yes, love is hard. Sometimes it feels too hard. Love is also a choice.

Sometimes I don’t want to make that choice.  Sunday night, I renewed my desire to make the hard choices that love requires; I expressed that desire in the following poem of my own.

I Will Choose to Look Up

I will choose to look up
When I’m feeling down
I will choose to smile
When I want to frown

I will choose to be kind
When I’m feeling cross
I will choose to forgive
When I’ve suffered loss

I will choose to give
When I want to keep
I will choose to climb
When the road is steep

I will choose to pray
When my faith is small
I will choose to hope
When I feel none at all

I will choose to trust
When I know not why
I will choose to sing
When I want to cry

I will choose to stay
When I want to split
I will choose to rest
When I don’t want to quit

I will choose to follow
When I want to direct
I will choose to honor
When I’ve received no respect

I will choose to obey
When I want to rebel
I will choose to be silent
When I want to tell

I will choose to protect
When I want to expose
I will choose to be silent
When I want to disclose

I will choose to give thanks
When I want to complain
I will choose to learn more
When I want to stay the same

I will choose to resist
When I want to give in
I will choose to love
When I feel nothing within

I will choose not to remain
In the swamp of regret
I will choose to persist
When my strength is spent

I will choose to write
When I’m struggling with doubt
A flickering light
I will not put out

I will focus my eyes
On the heavenly scene
And choose as my treasure
That which can’t be seen

9/10/17 Jane Ault

These verses depict the choices I want always to make. Do I always make them? Not even for one day. My will power is insufficient; about an hour after I wake up, it becomes nonfunctional. For example, I might get irritated at my husband or complain about my dietary restrictions.  Because God is gracious, I receive forgiveness and move on. In a cooperative relationship with the Spirit, which I call ” the dynamic  dance of choosing grace”, the Holy Spirit gives me the ability and to make the choices that I , apart from him, cannot do. 

14 Responses

  1. Excellent message, and one I’m linking to in my blog post on Saturday. I believe my readers will appreciate your thoughts too, Jane. Thanks for sharing them with us.

  2. So wonderfully said once again. Your transparency, obedience, wisdom and your love for God are so evident in your writings and poems. I just love this poem and I’m going to print it as a good reminder of my choices. Some days are definitely easier than others. I loved “the dynamic dance of choosing grace”, so good and so true!! Thanks for your encouragement, I always look so forward to what you have to say!!

    1. Thank you Rose. So good to hear from you! You are right; making these choices are challenging for me, too–some days easier than others. I’m so grateful for the forgiving grace of Jesus; he is there when we stumble, a very present help at all times.

  3. Our choices are so important. You remind of the choices that Jesus made for us that were so vital for our very beings. I’m trying to allow the Holy Spirit do His work in me and make the Godly choices but it is so difficult. Thank you for your wonderful, gentle reminder.

    1. Yes, Debbie, these are difficult choices. Only Jesus made these kinds of choices continually and with perfection. I’m so thankful for our Father’s forgiving grace because often I make a faulty choice. I continually have to remind myself that the good thing that God started in me he will complete.

  4. Thank you for this post. It is very encouraging! I will confess at this moment I shall renew my “”cooperative” and trusting relationship with the Holy Spirit.

    1. Thanks for commenting on my post, today, Deb. I appreciate your humble and sweet spirit. Over the years, I’ve seen much evidence of a heart that trusts the Holy Spirit.

    1. Dear Judith, I’m so glad to know that you have Ellen’s book, as well as mine. What a treasure she is! As far as my being able to “saying it well”, that’s God’s gift. Thanks for your encouragement along the way.

  5. What a lovely morning reminder of our choice for each day- God’s eternal perspective and grace or our flawed viewpoint and weakness.

    He Is Able- He is the same, yesterday, today and forever!

    1. Yes, Donna, there’s quite a contrast between God’s perspective and our limited and flawed viewpoint. I’m so thankful for his strength in my weakness.

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