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By Dr. Dan Wuori
Have you ever had to make a choice between the right thing and right now?
I have this problem sometimes. Let me give you an example.
Have you ever wanted – or maybe even really needed – something that costs more money than you have to spend? When that happens it means that you have to do some saving, right? And once you save up enough money you can get that special thing. The only problem is, saving can be really hard. And sometimes it’s tempting to take the money you already have and spend it on something you can have right now…even if that thing is much less important than the thing you might have saved it for.
There’s a word for that: Impulsivity. When you are impulsive you make quick decisions that might seem like a good idea right now – but aren’t always the smartest in the long run. It might be tempting to have two bowls of ice cream – just because it tastes so good while you’re eating it – but when it gives you a stomach ache you might decide that that impulsive decision wasn’t a great one.
Sometimes doing the right thing means fighting our impulsivity.
In today’s gospel story Jesus tells the crowd that has gathered around him not to work for “food that perishes, but for the food that endures eternal life.” As with many of his lessons, he’s not really talking about food here.
What he’s telling them, in part, is that they need not to think so much about things that they want right now that they make impulsive or selfish choices. Doing God’s work often means thinking ahead about what’s really the right thing to do…and that’s not always going to be the “right now” thing.
Will you make wise choices this week? Great.
Help us to make wise choices that may be pleasing to you.
Copyright 2009, Dr. Dan Wuori. Used by permission.