I grew up loving books. They were an escape and a comfort. I enjoyed one series in particular because it was a great adventure. The Choose Your Own Adventure series was my favorite as a kid. I have wonderful memories of my mom taking me to pick out a new book in the series when we would go shopping together.
The books were unique because they contained a number of adventures that the characters could take based on the reader’s choice. As readers made their way through the book, they would periodically come to a point where they would need to choose the next adventure based on a brief description of the events the characters would face. The reader would turn to the appropriate page and follow along on the adventure. If for some reason the adventure didn’t turn out the way the readers had hoped, they could return to the previous selection and pick an alternate choice.
I still have my collection and, from time to time, I pick up one and enjoy it once more. I long for my childhood days when I was able to see the outcome of various choices without having to commit to or experience unwanted consequences. I love the control that I had to go backwards to make different choices when the outcome wasn’t as I expected.
Not So Predictable Endings
While I have grown well beyond the age of the typical reader for the series, I only know slightly more about predictable outcomes of choices than I knew at that time. And in the days before I knew Jesus as my Savior, the adventure I chose almost always ended in outcomes that I didn’t want.
The ultimate adventure that I chose, however, was when I handed over the pages of my life to Jesus. In choosing the adventure He has for us, I’ve learned enough to know that the outcome is always far different than I anticipate. In fact, the closer I get to Jesus in my walk, the more I’m surprised at the magnitude of the adventures that He’s planned for me.
The Gift of Choice
Honestly, if I read this blog written by someone else 10 years ago, I probably would have laughed and thought it was corny. I still understand that reaction. Now, though, what I can’t fully understand is how much my Savior loves me to be able to choose Him at all. I didn’t deserve that choice, and I didn’t originally choose the adventure He had already lined up for me. What a loving God we serve who has allowed us the gift of choice!
My perspective now, is that if you’re following Jesus and the adventure doesn’t seem as much of an adventure as you would like, then you must not be following Him closely enough. It’s wild, friend. More than you can ask for, and imagine, and more interesting than all the books in the world.
Joanna Sanders is a graduate of Villanova University and Moody Theological Seminary. She’s the author of Fire Women: Sexual Purity & Submission for the Passionate Woman and the co-author and editor of DiscipleTrip by Dr. Joey Cook. She’s also the founder and head writer of Colossians46.com, which provides biblical content support, writing, and editing. Most importantly, she is wife to Geoff and mom to three godly men-in-training. Her blog name “The Landing” comes from the account of the Ark resting on the mountain, creating a settled place — a landing — for man to start over, which echoes her new life in Christ.