so i finished “with or without you” last night. here’s one of my favorite parts from “with or without you.” of course there was all the relationship stuff and some good spiritual insights (such as the idea that love always wins, but always here on earth, or that it’s hard for us to give grace to others because it’s unfair–it’s purposely not doling out the punishment you deserve). but my favorite was an example he dug up from this author Erwin McManus. he recaps how erwin got a call one day from his junior-high son who was away at camp and wanted to come home. the kid, though, admits that he heard a voice in his head that told him he should stay and try to work things out with another kid he’d gotten in a fight with. the dad (erwin) makes it a point to tell his son, “do you realize what just happened? you heard the voice of the living God. he spoke to you from within your soul. forget everything else that just happened. god has spoken to you, and you were able to recognize him.” erwin goes on to tell his son that he has two choices in this situation; to obey God or not to, but each carries a consequence. “if he rejected the voice of God and chose to disobey His guidance, his heart would become hardened, and his ears would become dull. and if he continued on this path, there would be a day when he would never again hear the voice of God. …. but if he treasured God’s voice and responded to Him in obedience, then his heart would be softened and his ears would always be able to hear the whisper of God into his soul.”

i love that idea, of how the smallest choices today can have such great ramifications, and pointing that reality out to a young kid. we so easily disregard things and hinge everything on second chances or tomorrow or next time. but today matters, and we have to realize that and how much it can matter.