We can all come up with many reasons to visit our favorite coffee shop. Perhaps you go for the atmosphere, or for the fresh baked goods they sell, or maybe because it is a great place to hold a business meeting. Few of us however go there because there is no where cheaper to get a cup of coffee.

Today I am at my favorite local coffee shop “Monkabeans” in Shakopee because I had no choice. You see I got to the office this morning to find once again that there was no heat in the building, not as a cost saving measure, but because we are waiting on a part for the boiler to be installed. So I could sit in my office and try to type with my gloves on, or I could visit my local coffee hangout. Like I said, I had no choice.

Well at least that is what I told myself. It is an excuse we all fall back on from time to time, but the simple truth is we always have a choice.  That is the beauty of the life, and a measure of the Love that God created us with.  We were not meant to be robots who simply followed some preset programming for our life.

I think to often we like to put the blame for our choices on someone else. From small choices, like to donut or not to donut, or to large choices of spouce or career as something outside of our control we say it was our destiny. I have also learned in my 50+ years that if we can’t get control of our small choices, how are we ever going to claim victory over our larger choices.

As a youth worker for more than 25 years I heard from parents all the time about the lack of choice they had for their children, “I’m sorry they can’t make the confirmation retreat because they have a water polo tournament that weekend.” Oh well, then they had no choice. Not true- they always have a choice.  They could chose the retreat over the tournament. “But the coach says if they don’t play the tournament then they can’t play the next two games.” Yes – that is called a choice.

Now lets not point the fingers at parents and youth athletics which we can all agree have gotten out of control in recent years, remember how they got there. For years we have been making bad choices, all of us.  It is why retail stores are open on Sundays, why the sabbath is not observed, because we choose to make it so.

Death is the choice that is not ours to make, we are all terminal, we all are going to die. Yet even in this inescapable reality we still have some choice. We can chose to not put ourselves at risk of death by our behavior, and I’m not just talking about free climbing sheer rock face mountins I’m talking about the junk food we eat as well.

Life is full of choices. I have to admit that too many days I make poor choices with my time, I choose to dive into the work of the day without taking time for a quiet conversation with my creator, without time in his Word.

I think it is time we all face up to the fact that God has wonderfully created us with a purpose, and gifted us with certain gifts and abilities which he intended for us to use for His glory. Now the choice is ours – do we seek his purpose and use our gifts or do we fill our days with other choices that put a limit on our potential.

OK I did have a choice this morning, I could have waited for the space heater to warm up my office, I could have gone back home where the heat is on and worked from there, I could have gone to the Library where the heat is on the the work spaces are in abundance.

My choice was to come to the coffee shop, and I’m glad I did for it caused me to PonderGod and how our choices both big and small can effect us.

Oh and on that question of “to donut or not to donut?” You can keep me in your prayers that is a big choice I need to make every day as I choose to live a healthier lifestyle by what I eat and by what I do with my other choices throughout my day.