Making the Hard Choices
I have a daughter who is horrible at making decisions. Everyone loves her because she is honestly happy with whatever they decide. What movie should we see? They're both great. What to eat for dinner? Everything is delicious. It's great.
Sometimes, though, we have to make a decision. We need to choose. In the readings this weekend, there were two choices to make. Actually, they were really the same choice.
Joshua stood before the people of God as they were living comfortably in the land they had been promised. All was well, life was comfortable, and there was no trouble on the horizon. It was going so well, that it would be easy to forget how they got there in the first place. It would be tempting to turn away and rely on someone or something else.
So Joshua demanded, "If it does not please you to serve the Lord, decide today whom you will serve, the gods your fathers served beyond the River or the gods of the Amorites in whose country you are now dwelling. As for me and my household, we will serve the Lord." (Joshua 24:15)
Much later, Jesus asks the disciples to make the same decision. Many disciples leave after hearing that Jesus is the true food, the bread of life, and "whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me and I in him." (John 6:48-58) It's really a bit outlandish if you think about it. Yet Jesus asks the rest, "Do you also want to leave?" He doesn't make this confusing episode any clearer. He just asks, "Do you trust me?"
I think that today, we are also being asked, "Will you stay?" Will you stay and trust the God who brought you to where you are? Will you stay and serve the one who has the power to conquer all? Truly serve, even when you're not sure what is happening or where things are going?
As for me and my household, we're staying. As Peter said to Jesus, "Master, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life." (John 6:68)
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If I speak in human and angelic tongues but do not have love, I am a resounding gong or a clashing cymbal. (1 Cor 13:1) I have written many drafts trying to decide what to say about the events of Janu