Choices: God’s and Ours

Amazon Review, Book Reviews, Editors

Paul Shotsberger 

“The end of the matter; all has been heard. Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man. For God will bring every deed into judgment, with every secret thing, whether good or evil.” –Ecclesiastes 12:13-14

Choices is written by Paul Shotsberger. Shotsberger is Professor of Education at Southern Wesleyan University. Prior to his current position, he served as an officer in the United States Navy, a high school mathematics teacher, and a missionary in Ukraine.

Choices is a collection of views and stories about how God’s decision’s and our choices correlate together to achieve His Kingdom. The overall perception in the book is transcribed from a practical theological standpoint. He touches on how we have the freedom to make our own choices, and how those choices have distinct consequences. Each and every day we decide what choices we want to do and how we do things. The only time we feel as if we are stripped of our free will is when we feel as if we have to do things when there is someone controlling or commanding us. Shotsberger states that this can be situation where the person is enslaved by a force in suppressive societies.

Shotsberger touches on spiritual heroes and how they come in all ages, shapes, sizes, and race. Spiritual heroes can be meek and valiant- or discreet and bold. Even though spiritual heroes can be different appearance wise, they all have one thing in common. Each of them come into our lives and leave an ineradicable impression that leads back to Christ before it points back to them. We would want nothing more than just to see and hear these heroes everyday- the very ones who spread their gospel during and after their lifetime. Especially after their lifetime, when their everlasting marks on those around them. Shotsberger clarifiers that John Scott is one of his spiritual heroes. He was the British missiologist and theologian, but has sadly passed away.  

“When it comes to living out God’s calling and plan for our life, we can often feel paralyzed by the fear of making wrong choices. Likewise, we can find ourselves wondering if all of our choices are free will or sovereignly predetermined, and if so to what extent? This is why Dr. Paul Shotsberger’s Choices is so refreshing, because it underscores the power of conforming our choices with God’s choices in order to live a life of purpose and Kingdom-mindedness. Dr. Shotsberger tackles this theological topic in a thoughtful and conversational manner by carefully utilizing Scripture and his personal adventures in ministry. This book helps us recognize that choices are an opportunity to partner with God’s redemptive work.”

–KT Terry, Windchime Pictures President, Pastor

“No one seeking to follow Christ can simply ignore the question of how his or her decisions can fit into God’s sovereign plan. The daily–sometimes hourly–demands to choose one path over another won’t allow it. In this slim volume I was pleased to find important insights that should help every believer make the fundamental underlying choices that will firmly ground those daily decisions. I heartily recommend it.”

–Keith Iddings, Consultant and Academic Leader

“Using an initial compelling example learned in the U. S. Navy, Paul masterfully lays out for us the strategic interplay between God’s choices and ours. Yes, choices do have consequences. Peering into the window of various biblical characters, we can see ourselves in their stories and are encouraged to make right choices, or accept choices made for us. You will be blessed and challenged to read Choices. I know I have been.”

–Ronald L. Bernier, Pastor, Master Builder Ministries