Everyday we make choices. Some are good. Some not so much. Some are important. Some not so much. Some are easy. Some not so much. Tonight, the Bible opened to Joshua:
“Now, therefore, fear the LORD and serve him completely and sincerely. Cast out the gods your ancestors served beyond the River and in Egypt, and serve the LORD. If it is displeasing to you to serve the LORD, choose today whom you will serve, the gods your ancestors served beyond the River or the gods of the Amorites in whose country you are dwelling. As for me and my household, we will serve the LORD.”
I have heard the last line before, but never read the context surrounding it before. What suddenly struck me tonight, was the choice. Joshua tells the Israelites to make a choice. If they are going to serve the Lord, then serve Him, commit to it and make a covenant to do so. Seems like an easy choice. What really strikes me in this passage is Joshua’s statement: if it is displeasing to you to serve the Lord, choose whom you will serve. I am struck by a statement that seems to make no sense: how could serving the Lord be displeasing? It might not always be easy, but displeasing? No way! I cannot think of anything displeasing about serving God. And yet, I do not always serve Him. Laziness, taking the easy way, following the crowd, lots of excuses. But no good reason. Maybe, it is because I have not affirmatively made the choice. I have not committed or made a covenant or promise. I have just gone about life. Choose, Joshua says. As for him and what he can control, he will serve the Lord. He encourages the Israelites to do the same, but ultimately it is their choice. Just like it is our choice.
I choose to serve you.