July 12, 2013

We make choices every day; some are negligible while some are critical. The critical choices are the ones that ultimately define who we are. In T.S. Elliot’s poem, The Hollow Men, he writes of people whom have chosen to live a shallow, temporal existence . . . 

“We are the hollow men

We are the stuffed men

Leaning together

Headpiece filled with straw. Alas!

Our dried voices, when

We whisper together

Are quiet and meaningless

As wind in dry grass

Or rats' feet over broken glass

In our dry cellar,

Shape without form, shade without color,

Paralyzed force, gesture without motion . . .” 

Elliot’s bleak picture of a hapless humanity fixated on worldly selfish desires stands in stark contrast to the result of the decision made by the speaker in Robert Frost’s poem, “The Road Not Taken.” 

“Two roads diverged in a wood and I—

I took the one less traveled by,

And that has made all the difference.” 

In Matthew 7:13-14, Jesus makes it very clear choosing the way of the world leads to a hollow and meaningless existence, while choosing his way leads to life eternal. 

The Bible is replete with people who found themselves at a crossroads. Some like Abraham, Samuel, and Job chose to take God’s path; however, several, albeit with initial good intentions, ended up taking the worldly route resulting in their story ending the same way Elliot’s poem ended: “Not with a bang but a whimper.”

 

Genesis 27:1-10

Sir Walter Scott wrote in his poem, Marmion: “O what a tangled web we weave, when we practice to deceive.” Remember, faith is living without scheming, and faith means obeying God no matter how we feel, what we think, or what might happen. Obedient faith was the secret of Abraham’s life (Hebrews 11:8), but the absence of obedient faith brought trouble to the home of Isaac and Rebekah.