When in a situation in which people may choose Scripture readings–and here I speak primarily of weddings and funerals–most priests and liturgists I know give the grieving family or the engaged couple pretty wide latitude.
These days, we rarely get people agitating for a non-Scripture passage. Sometimes, they will ask about a non-Lectionary reading. One of the favorites over the years is Ecclesiastes 3:1-11 (There is a time for this, and a time for that …) for the funeral.
My current boss has been known to let the people have two OT or two NT readings if they want. Twice in the past two years I’ve prepared Psalm 23 as a “reading” for a family member.
I know one priest who always reserves the choice of a funeral Gospel reading to himself. He invariably chooses the people’s favorite, John 14:1-6. Another priest friend once questioned me about the choices he encountered. Why, he asked, do people pick the Beatitudes for the funeral? Why do we allow Ecclesiastes?
Have a seat in the Chair of Choice. When the reading choices are significant, do you let the laity choose? Do you reserve any choice for yourself? Do you permit non-Lectionary Bible choices?