So, what kind of food would you like this evening? Here in Fort Bend County, we have many amazing choices for food. Everything from seafood to Mexican, bar-b-que to Nalli Nihari, and Chinese to Korean. By driving a short distance, you can eat quickly at Chick-fil-a or spend an evening at Perry’s Steak House. I love all the choices we have in America!
Recently, my wife and I received a Keurig coffee maker. In the past, we had been using two coffee makers each morning because I use decaffeinated and my wife uses regular. While I stick with the same thing every morning, my wife likes to experiment with flavored coffees. Now, with this new coffee maker, we are free to use just one machine and can experiment as much as creativity and money allows!
Here in America, we have the freedom of choice. What does that mean? Blacks American Law Dictionary defines freedom of choice as: “The unfettered right to do what one wants when one wants as one wants, except where it infringes or prevents another from doing what that one wants and do so on. Also excluded is doing something that would harm one’s self or another.”
As I was preparing a message on freedom of choice, there was a passage in Genesis Chapter 2 that caught my eye. This chapter features the creation of Adam and Eve, and their introduction into the garden of Eden. God presents the newly formed couple with an amazing smorgasbord of food options to satisfy any yearning they might have (verse 9). There were few limitations. “But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat.” (verse 17)
Of course, as we all know, that was the exact option they chose, and the world has been in chaos ever since. Adam and Eve used their power of choice unwisely. It was John Maxwell who said, “Everything begins with a decision. Then, we have to manage that decision for the rest of your life.”
Life is about choices. God even created two-year-old’s with the power of choice. Some manage their options very well. Others can be found rolling on the floor of Walmart screaming in anger. As we age, most of us manage to make better choices, and use our freedoms more wisely. But not everyone. The newspaper column titled “Indictments,” features those who continue to make poor choices even into adulthood.
There are those who choose to rail against laws regarding immigration, speed zones, drugs, and income taxes. They are suspicious of anyone who enforces the rules. They have confused freedom with anarchy. True freedom has boundaries.
I remember the story of a guy who was jumping up and down on a busy street corner. He was swinging his arms with wild abandon, when a policeman urged him to be careful. With anger and belligerence in his voice, the guy retorted to the policeman, “This sir, is America! I am free to swing my arms anywhere I want to!” The patient but firm policeman responded, “Sir, this is America, and you have many freedoms. But your freedom to swing your arms ends where my nose begins.” Freedom has limits.
The United States is in spiritual and moral crisis. The fight over freedom of choice has led to many people getting hurt. Join with me in prayer as we all take a step back for a moment and remember that the freedoms we have are precious, limited, and under attack. Consider this promise from the Lord in 2 Chronicles 7:14 KJV, “If My people, which are called by My name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from Heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.” That’s a great choice to make to start the healing.