Remember that line from grade school?

You can’t make me!!

I have been thinking about this in the context of motivation and encouragement. We can be positive and encouraging and do our best to lift someone up. We can even speak into their life and help them realize things they may not believe about themselves. But what I can NEVER do is MAKE them do anything.

They have to choose for themselves. The decision to change has to be more attractive than the decision to stay the same. They have to choose to change. This is true in so many areas of our life.

I can’t make someone stop drinking – but I can show them unconditional love.

I can’t make someone eat healthier – but I can offer suggestions that have helped me.

I can’t make someone want to have a relationship with God – but I can live the most authentic, loving life that I can.

I can’t make someone follow their dream – but I can ask them about it. And I can help them remember what it was like to dream.

The list could go on forever. But the one thing I have learned is that it has to be YOUR decision to change. It can’t be your husband’s, or your boss’, or your friend or family member.

Change has to come from you. It has to mean something to you. It has to cost you something.

But the great part is always the reward. It is always better than you imagined.

What significant changes have you made in your life?