Tuesday, July 16, 2013

The filter of right and wrong

So this photo has nothing to do with my blog post except for the fact that I decided to write about this topic while hanging out at Sunset Beach.

The other day, Morgan needed to make a decision that was somewhat controversial for a 13 year old. It opened the way for a very good discussion on making decisions. I told her that she needed to learn to make good choices because she would be the one to live with the consequences, whether that consequence be good or bad.

And then we talked about running it through a "Decision Filter". There are three basic questions she needs to answer in her head when making any decision:

1. Is it something I don't want someone to know? 
If you're feeling the need to hide something, chances are, it's wrong (or you're wrong). Truth and transparency typically are owned by those making good and correct choices. If there's one thing I learned over the past few years, hiding anything is a horrible thing and serves no one.

2. Will it hurt me or someone else?
If the answer is yes, then obviously the choice is a bad one. 

3. If God were standing next to me (and He is), would I make the same choice?
If the answer is yes, you're probably on solid ground.

I cognitively instilled this filter system in my head pretty much on the day I had the police remove my out-of-control husband from our home and left him for good. Since then, I've tried very hard to live my life in the open, with honesty and truth, trying to be good and kind to others, and making choices that God would approve of. While before getting sick I tried to be a good person, the truth is that I hid in the shame of victimhood, which taught everyone in our household some very confusing and unhealthy messages. No more.

I've not always made perfect choices since then, but I actively try. I wish I had done this from the beginning but I didn't and all I can do is live differently now and teach my children the best I can through coaching and example. I can only hope that their path is better than mine was.