Living with Our Choices
May 19, 2002
ILLUSTRATION: Let me begin this morning with the following story:
John Wesley Powell is a name not well recognized today. He was the one-armed, hero-explorer of American national treasure, the Grand Canyon. Powell named a place on the Colorado River "Separation Rapid." This is where three men separated from the main party and attempted to walk out of the canyon by themselves.
What precipitated this separation? A major dilemma! The Powell party had earlier lost one of their four boats and over half their food to the river. The rapids they now faced were more menacing than anything they had previously encountered. Normally they "portaged" (i.e., carried) their huge wooden boats around such difficulty, but here it was impossible. Two choices were available to the explorers: (1) abandon the exploration and walk out, into uncharted and hostile territory; (2) face their fears and plunge headlong into the rapids, trusting themselves to make it.
Three chose the former, while the seven remaining men chose the latter. To everyone's surprise the rapids only had the appearance of a treacherous ride; within minutes they cleared "Separation Rapid," unscathed and with all their provisions. The three separators were never heard from again.
- John Gillmartin
1. I've used this story for one reason: To remind us of the importance of choices. Hopefully, no one here will ever be confronted with a choice like these men had to make. But the truth of the matter is, we are all confronted with choices in our life--some we've already made, some we are making today, and choices we will be forced to decide as the days and years go by.
2. Here's the heart of the message--don't miss it: We will have to live with the choices we make...whether good or bad decisions, good or bad choices, when you and I make a decision it is our choice--and it is something we live with.
QUOTE: Stephen R. Lawhead said con ...
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