Life brings about a lot of change. We experience things that bring us a lot of joy, and things that bring us much grief, anger and disappointment. There have been times when I’ve questioned why things have happened to me… or more specifically, why God allowed things to happen to me. As I’ve matured, I realize that every decision has a simultaneous impact on my future -some leading to good things, others leading to bad things. While one small decision may not, in and of itself, cause a major life change, the ripple effect of many small decisions certainly can. This wisdom has allowed me to see that most of what I’ve experienced (good, bad and indifferent) has resulted from decisions that I’ve made.

This doesn’t mean that accidents and mistakes don’t occur, but when we stop to think about how we’ve found ourselves in a given situation, it can usually be traced to a decision or a series of decisions that we’ve made along the way. Deciding to say yes instead of no. Deciding to drive one route to work instead of another. Deciding to drink a particular soda every day. These are all decisions, seemingly simple ones that we typically don’t give much thought to, that can literally change our lives. Saying yes to something that you really don’t want to do can cause you stress, take you away from something that is more important to you, and may cause you to feel resentment towards the person who asked you. Taking a specific route to work one day could cause you to be involved in an accident or to avoid an accident. Drinking a soda every day could lead to multiple health issues years later. Think about it, these are just simple everyday decisions we are making; so imagine how much more of an impact the critical decisions in our life can have.

So many of us are living life with an attitude of “it is what it is.” But the truth is, it is what you make it. Be intentional about your life. Don’t just let the days come and go, continuing to do things out of habit. Live consciously. Be aware of the impact of your decisions on your life and the lives of others. Take ownership of your life. Be an active participant in life. Make the decision to make it what you want it to be!

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