Everyday I wake up in a world of choices. I wake up to the sounds of each one pleading with me. Each one different, each one speaking to my innermost parts—my desires, my fears, my hopes, my dreams. But underneath their words, they are all saying the same thing: “Don’t choose God, don’t choose God, don’t choose God!” trying from the very second I wake to pull me away from the One I was made to choose daily.
I often find myself wishing that the narrow gate was the only option, the only path set out before me. Because how much easier would it be then to want the right things, do the things we are supposed to do, and be who we are called to be as His beloved people. It would be so much easier if there were no other options—but then we couldn’t call it love.
The point of this free will, of this world of choices, is that God doesn’t want us to follow Him simply because it is convenient or the only option. He doesn’t want to merely be a back up plan, in case all our other man-made plans fall through. He wants you to want Him, choose Him over everything else, to love Him deeply—because that is how He wants and chooses and loves you.
I spend so much time striving, trying to figure out how to better choose God when I’m so good at doing the opposite. I think in the midst of that I forget that God isn’t without choice either. He isn’t forced to love us, just like He doesn’t force us to love Him. He is just at liberty to walk away from us as we are to walk away from Him. Free will doesn’t even hold a candle to the freedom that God has—He can do whatever He wants. He spoke us into existence, He could end us the same way. He says, “I am who I am.” That could be anything. His options are endless—He is endless.
Yet how often I try to contain Him in a three letter word. How often I think of Him only in songs and sermons, only as laws for better living. How often I look at the world from the point of view of me, me, me. How often I think only about us tiny bits of flesh and blood, when really we are only a microscopic piece of His infinite creation. There is so much more than us. Yet everyday, He chooses to be our God. Of all His infinite creation, He chooses us to be the ones who get to bring Him glory. He chooses us to be the recipients of His unending mercy and grace. He loves us with a love that was bought by a cross and secured by the resurrection. And every single day, He promises these things to be true: that He will be faithful, be present, be listening, be working, be healing, be pursuing. That we are His people and He is our God. That we are covered, cared for, redeemed, made new, and set free by the blood of His only son.
We aren’t His only option, but we certainly aren’t some last resort either, some back up plan He came up with in case everything else failed. In fact, we are the ones who failed. We are the ones who went running away. We are the ones who started choosing all the wrong things—and yet He is the One that sought after us still.
Because He wants us, everyday.
He chooses us, everyday.
And He loves us, every single day.
I try to wrap my mind around this, around all that He is, around the fact that God could go so far from me if He wanted. Then I rest, oh-so-gratefully, in the truth that the place He wants to be more than anything, the place He deems greater than all of the other works of His hands, is right next to you and me.
When I shift my focus to the One who looks at us, those waking up everyday in a world of choices, and says “Them. I choose them. I want them. I love them. Even if they never feel the same way about me, this will still be my heart for them,” I realize that maybe it is not about me striving and trying to become better at choosing God. Instead, maybe all I need is to seek to know and understand the way He so faithfully chooses me. Because in the face of a love like His, my own choice becomes so, so clear.
“I choose Him, I choose Him, I choose Him,” I wake up and say.
words by Jacqueline Winstead and photo by Sarah Mohan