What Determines Who You Are?

Consider some of the influences that impact the formative years of your

life and how little (?) control you have in each of them:

· Your parents (the good, the bad, the ugly)

· Your DNA (looks, athleticism, health, height, weight, sex, skin color)

· Your siblings (birth order, brothers or sisters, difference in age or lack thereof)

· Your extended family (grandparents, aunts & uncles, cousins, in-laws, step-laws)

· Your friends

· Economic status of your family

· Schooling

· Personal interests (reading, sports, music, outdoors, mechanics, etc.)

· Geographic location (city/rural, local values, population density, climate)

· Family’s relationship to God


In how much of the above did you have a say as you were growing up? Of course you had some freedom in choosing friends & personal interests, but even there you had limitations. “WHAT YOU DECIDE” is really the only one over which you have control.

I cannot make myself taller, smarter, faster, talented, healthier or popular by deciding to be any of those things. To be sure, I can work towards some of that, but in any case, some of the particulars of my life are pretty much locked into place.

There is nothing God asks or wants of me that I cannot accomplish, depending on WHAT I DECIDE! Faith, hope, love, joy, kindness, gentleness, peace, patience & self-control and all that comes with them are all mine for the taking.

Regardless of the things in the first list over which I have no control, the behaviors I choose for myself is who I’ll be in the final analysis.

For this, we should thank God profusely.