Minimizing the Damage of Little Decisions

After reading Thora’s post on Monday, I was challenged to consider all the little decisions I make throughout the day.  I make decisions about what I’m going to do, how I’ll spend my money, what I’m going to say – and what I’m NOT going to do, spend or say.

One of the biggest challenges I face right now has to do with what I eat.  You see, I’m on Weight Watchers.  For the past 18 years, I’ve battled to be at a healthy weight.  Coincidentally, my oldest child is 18.  Not that I’m blaming him … but, I’m just saying …

My first week on the program I had a respectable loss of 1.5 pounds.  The second week on the program, I lost nothing.  I was shocked.  It seemed to me that I had exercised more and sacrificed more that past week than ever before.  But the scale told the truth.  

The kind lady at the reception desk tried to help me think it through.  “Maybe you aren’t eating enough,” she said.  No, that wasn’t the problem.  “Are you drinking enough water?” she continued.   Yes, so that’s not the problem.

Then it hit me.  I knew what the problem was.  It wasn’t what I was eating when I sat down for a meal, it was all the bites that led up to that meal.  It was the French fry here, and the extra bite of casserole as I put away the leftoevers.  It was the nibble of my son’s double cheeseburger, and the extra scoop of dip with my carrots.  Let’s not even talk about my trip to Costco.  It wasn’t the big decision that hurt my weight loss, it was all the little decisions. 

Unfortunately, I had minized the damage of all those little bites.  And they added up over time to derail me from my goal of having a weight loss when I stepped on the scale that Friday morning.

The next week I took control of those BLTs  (bites, licks and tastes) and had a nice loss recorded in my book.

As I’ve pondered this reality, I’ve applied it to other areas of my life.  I know I have a tendency to minimize the damage of daily decisions.  They aren’t sin issues, so I can dismiss them as unimportant.  However, when added up, they have a big impact on me achieving some of my personal goals. 

On the surface it can seem like I’m doing all the right things, only I’m sabotaging myself with the some of the everyday choices I make. 

If you find yourself treading water and not advancing in a certain area of your life, perhaps this truth  can apply to you as well.  You may be making all the right big decisions, but the little ones are having a cumulative negative impact on you.

Not only that, but I believe God desires to do amazing things through us and is continually testing us to see if we can handle bigger responsibilities.  It’s in the arena of little responsibilities that our true character is revealed. 

The reality is that those little decisions that seem minor, and inconsequential, really do matter.  They matter to me as I pursue some personal goals, and they matter to God. 

My challenge today – and just for today – is to make every decision count. And ask myself, “Is this decision going to get me closer to my goal, or further away from it?”  “Is this decision going to show God I can be trusted with the little things?”

Sometimes I ask this question every hour.  Which is why I’m eating a plate of steamed vegetables for dinner, and my family had Chipotle burritos.  Not that it’s Thursday night and I’m weighing in Friday morning or anything. 

In His Love,


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