• Every Moment a Choice

  • One day many years ago, my daughter and I passed a fast food restaurant which was part of a very large, well known chain. (No, it wasn’t McDonalds). Another store in the chain had been in the news a few days before. It seems that store had sold burgers made with beef that had been tainted. Many customers had become ill. A few people had become seriously ill.  It had been a big story nationally.

    As we passed this store my then 12 year old daughter observed that at any time we could make a bad choice. I asked her what she meant and she went on to tell me that she and I could have walked into that restaurant and we too could have been served a tainted hamburger. We wouldn’t know walking into that restaurant was a bad choice until after we had eaten there. 

    My daughter was of course, absolutely right. Nearly every second of every day, we are making choices. We make so many choices, we can hardly keep track of them all. Most of the time a sizable majority of the choices we make in fact, work out. For example, let’s say on the way to work some morning you come upon an accident that had just taken place. Let’s further suppose that you had left home a moment or two later than usual because you had forgotten some item. So, when you come upon the accident scene, rather than feeling frustrated about being late, you might feel very fortunate. Had you left on time, it might have been you that had become involved in the accident. 

    So, we make a lot of choices. And many choices we make we are unaware we are making them. However we become very aware of big choices we have to make. Like, a home purchase. Or, to look for a new job. Faced with those choices, we feel a real need to make the right one. Because we know the big choices have consequences. But don’t all of our choices, large or small, have consequences? A small choice made on an otherwise average morning may have averted a disaster; like an accident, Is that not a consequence? Of course it is. 

    There are other choices that we face that are not as apparent as others but are no less momentous. Every day we face moments where we can be make change in our lives. In fact, all the little moments we live through every day are opportunities to take a step toward transformation. It might sound like over-statement but is’s true. Every second of every day we can choose to change our attitude about ourselves, our friends, our enemies, our spouse or partner. At every moment of every day, we can make great change. Even if that change is merely tweaking an attitude or choosing to act on a lofty intention. We can never really know the consequences of our choices until we live them. And living is, on balance not a bad way to be at all.