I have been thinking a lot this year about how I want to live, Actually, I have been thinking about how I don’t want to live.
First of all I don’t want to live with unforgiveness in my heart. I could, in fact I think it is much easier than forgiving, but I just don’t want to.
Second, I don’t want to live angry. There are plenty of things to get mad about and some of those things honestly should make us mad but I don’t want to live that way. I have never found that love and anger share the same space very well.
Third, I don’t want to live cautiously. It is not that I am reckless, it is just that I want to live a life that “plays to win” and not “plays not to lose.” I want to live fully and if I make an impact for the better in the tiny space I occupy on this spinning ball, so much the better.
It occurs to me that in answering these three big questions about how I don’t want to live that I have determined just how I wish to live. To chose forgiveness means the hard work of actually forgiving those who have hurt me is on the table. To choose love requires me to control my impulses and to live in future hope, even and especially when, the present is biting solid wood. To live fully requires letting go of things like security and comfort that conspire to make me live a lesser life.
As we ponder the quality of our lives, we do well to remember that Jesus came to give us precisely the lives we could have never lived without him. “I have come that they might have life, and have life abundantly.” (John 10:10) Choose life!
-Rev. Shane L. Bishop