Tuesday, June 10, 2014

If/Then

I have come to realize that when I set goals for my health and spirituality that it all comes down to the choices I make. At then end of the day, the only person in charge of where I end up in life is me and the choices I make. God is not holding my feet to the fire, to live a Christian life. This is my choice. No one is telling me I must live a healthy life. This is my choice. No one will make me a better/different/more spiritual person, if I do not choose to make those changes in myself. 

Which leads me to the If/Then principle of meeting my goals: 

IF I choose to have the double Dutch ice cream with whip cream on top, THEN I will then to go for a walk after dinner. 

IF I choose to sleep in, THEN I will need to reorganize my day to squeeze in a run. 

IF I choose to order an appetizer in addition to my meal, THEN I will need to forego dessert and perhaps a drink. 

IF I choose to be angry about a situation (instead of dealing with it--hey, even I enjoy a good snit sometimes), THEN I will need to figure out a way to deal with the damage my anger caused. 

IF I choose to watch TV on the couch tonight, THEN I will need to write my blog during the day.

IF I choose to skip church, THEN I will need  to study my bible independently so that active spirituality remains a part of my discipline. 

IF I choose to drink, THEN I won't be driving. 

IF I choose to eat fake food, THEN my joints will hurt. 

IF I choose to sin, THEN I will need to repent and ask for forgiveness. 

IF I choose to cut out a mile from my long run, THEN I won't get faster/stronger or run more efficiently or with greater endurance because I have skipped out on my plan. 

IF I choose NOT to live a healthy life, THEN my health risk factors become greater, and I may become a physical and financial burden to my family. 

IF I choose NOT to live a spiritually disciplined life, THEN I make all sorts of bad decisions. 

IF I choose to believe that Jesus did not die for my sins, THEN I have no opportunity to be redeemed. 

IF I choose NOT to seek a relationship with God, THEN God cries.

Some of these examples are trade offs. I don't think a physically healthy life is devoid of chocolate or ice cream or other indulgences. These things delight the senses and bring joyful moments, especially when shared with others. Joy is delightful to God. But there are also consequences to those choices that require a trade off in order to have the sort of long term life I seek.  

Ultimately, I am looking at my life in the full scope of it's entirety, not just the passing of a moment of time. Each of those small moments and choices add up to the full breadth of who I am and whom I will be through my lifetime. In the grand scheme of things, I really want to try to make more good choices than bad ones. 

IF I try, THEN I have given my best.  IF I give my heart, THEN there will also be my treasure.  IF I look, THEN I will find the kingdom of heaven. 

IF I do nothing, THEN there will also be nothing.