As For Me...

How do you make choices? Do you make decisions based on the circumstances around you? By what other people are choosing? Or by what the Word of the Lord says?

We are faced with literally hundreds of decisions every day: Will I get up and be at work today? How will I dress? What will I do? Where will I go? Who will I talk to? How will I speak?

And that's just within the first few moments of the day.

Throughout the Bible, we are shown how choices affect the lives of individuals, their friends and family and everyone around them. Some chose for good, others for evil. Each of those choices is recorded in Scripture for us to read and learn from.

There are 24 instances in Scripture where the words "as for me" are used. They show the contrast between those who choose earthly, worldly things and the will of God. The verses that precede these words tell the stories of people with no concern for the things of the Lord. They are sinful, wicked, world-minded people.

But then the speaker uses those three words ... as for me ... and things change. They have made the decision to go against the grain and live for God.

The first time we read someone make this godly decision, it is in the book of Joshua. One of his most well-known statements says:

And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD. Joshua 24:15

The entire nation of Israel had a choice - God or gods. Joshua told them point blank what his decision was: as for me, I choose God. He and his family were blessed exceeding abundantly above for this decision, as were those who made the same choice.

In the book of 1 Samuel, the people of Israel again have a choice to make. They have been drowning in their sin, and the Lord has sent the storm. In fear, the people ask Samuel to pray for them, knowing they have done wrong.

Moreover as for me, God forbid that I should sin against the LORD in ceasing to pray for you: but I will teach you the good and the right way. 1 Samuel 12:23

Samuel had a choice - he could leave them to be punished for what they had done, which would have been sin in itself, or he could continue to pray to the Lord for their rescue. He chose to continue bringing them before the Lord in prayer, in addition to teaching them how they should continue from here on out.

There are several times in the book of Psalms that David tells the Lord about his choices. Again, they follow verses that describe how sinful the world around him is, but he chooses not to follow the crowd, instead following his God.

But as for me, I will come into thy house in the multitude of thy mercy: and in thy fear will I worship toward thy holy temple. Psalm 5:7

David begins this Psalm of morning prayer by describing to God the foolish, wicked people he sees around him. He knows God will punish and destroy these people for the choices they have made against Him. But as for David, he chose to be in the presence of God, worshiping and building that relationship. What a contrast to the dark world outside of the will of the Lord.

We will make these same choices this week - faced with pleasures of the flesh, momentary happiness and selfish motives, what will you choose? As for me, I will serve the Lord.

To read more "as for me ..." verses, start with Genesis 17:4, 1 Chronicles 29:17, Psalm 41:12 and Jeremiah 26:14.

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