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I have chosen the way of faithfulness; I have set my heart on your laws. Psalm 119:30

Remember the story of the Little Red Hen? She scurries around the farmyard trying to get the ingredients for making some her great homemade bread. She asks for help from all the farm animals and none of them are willing to help so she does it all herself. When the aroma of the bread wafts through the farmyard all the animals gather together for a taste only to find that she wasn’t willing to share since they weren’t willing to help.

One moral of that story might be that you have the choice to do whatever you want, but you may not like the consequences of your choices. Little Red Hen never appears to be angry with those who refused to help. She didn’t chastise them in the least. The request was made, the refusal received, and life went on.

Perhaps one of the most precious gifts God has given us, next to salvation itself, is the freedom to choose. He didn’t create robots, he created humans. He didn’t put within us a computer chip programmed to respond correctly in every situation. He gave us a mind that, like his could reason, explore and think. He gave us emotion so we could enjoy the sunsets, smell the fresh spring rain and look in awe at the mountains majesty.

But choice has a downside. Choosing to follow the path of faithfulness isn’t the easy button in life. In fact, choosing the path of faithfulness often leads us along a trail that is most difficult. Choosing to follow God is easy when things are going well, but true character, true faith, is shown when things don’t go the way we want them too.

It’s easy to believe in a God of love and grace and mercy and all things comfortable. It’s hard to believe in a God that allows us to suffer the consequences of our own poor choices. It’s easy to choose a God who rescues us from adversity. It’s hard to believe in a God that allows us to go through the frustration of being falsely accused; of being attacked for openly sharing our faith; chided for following a list of rules that seems antiquated and irrelevant in comparison of with the way the world is going.

The apostle Paul writes, “Don’t grow weary in doing good.” He knew what he was talking about. His life in Christ was full of pain, adversity, being falsely accused and physically attacked. Yet he finished the course, he fought the good fight.

God doesn’t always ask the big things of us. Sometimes he asks for a series of little steps, little choices. The decisions we make along the way will be hard but the reward is worth it. True faith says we will follow more closely to him when human wisdom screams at us to go the other way.

PRAYER: Father God, it’s easy to follow you on the good days when I’m not tempted, not mistreated, not feeling under attack. But I haven’t seen very many of those days. Empower me to see you on the hard days; those days when nothing seems to go right. On those days help me to choose you regardless of the cost. Amen.

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