Friday, January 30, 2009
Thursday, January 29, 2009
Monday, January 26, 2009
Saturday, January 24, 2009
Thursday, January 22, 2009
Friday, January 16, 2009
I AM LEARNING: Choose your Consequences
The year 2009 started as I finished reading another book: How To Ruin Your Life By 40 by Steve Ferrar. Its assertion is quite simple and surely familiar to us: The decisions we make now will define the rest of our lives. I wonder, however, if we actually realize the gravity of that statement.
What hit me most in the book is the statement of a certain Dr. Paul Beck to his future son-in-law John Bisagno that only one out of ten men who started with Christ in their twenties would finish strong. Bisagno knew this firsthand because among the 24 of his group who graduated from Bible College, only 3 remained standing. The lives of the rest were ruined by the age of forty. The author gave another example: three evangelists in their mid-twenties were preaching and changing lives across America in 1945. But by 1950, Chuck Templeton lost his belief in Jesus Christ, by 1954 Bron Clifford lost his ministry, family and health and later on his life. The only one who remained in the faith is Billy Graham.
I have seen how friends I grew up with and leaders whom I followed made some wrong decisions. Some fell away - one to drugs, a few to their choices on love, some to matters related to work and many because they let the cares in life direct their paths.
What about passive choices? I saw this pattern in the life of a former colleague. More than ten years in the same job, she was constantly complaining about her salary, bosses, co-workers, yet when possible changes were suggested, there was no action or reaction. Her indecision was in fact a passive choice that was eating away her life.
We can also fall into another kind of trap. We can get in the habit of praying but never acting or doing anything about our prayer items. The author said we sometimes assume that faith means sitting passively and believing that God will make everything happen. I believe that it doesn’t work that way. If we are within the circle of God’s will and we are listening to His commands, then we can make decisions and He will bless those choices. He is just waiting for us to take a step of faith.
I was in my teens when I decided to stay with CrosslinC, ICS’ youth fellowship. Later on, I gingerly accepted to co-coordinate the young adults fellowship. And guess what? The things I learned and the responsibilities I bore in those days paved the way for my growth. Accepting to lead a small group was not an easy task. But it literally forced me to try to seriously walk my talk. When I became a little older, I decided to join a professionals ministry in Makati for I knew I needed support in the marketplace. My experience there continues to make me a better person each day.
What is my point here? It is so easy to have been that friend or leader who has lost faith in God and is now walking the easy road to hell. But by the grace of God, the decisions I made - and am making still - are keeping me continually running the Race of Faith. It is not easy. It requires a daily decision of dying to oneself. I am sure it was not easy for Billy Graham, not even when he was in his 40s, 50, 60s or even 70s.
2009 has just started. It’s time to make that choice that will change your life. Choose to control your appetite and you may live to see your grandchildren. Choose to say “No” to that guy who doesn’t share your faith and see how God will surprise you with the love of your life. Choose to forgive, forget and move on and discover new joys in your existence. Choose to pursue that dream that God has planted in your heart and you may help change lives. Most importantly, choose to serve God and find fulfillment as you live out God’s purpose for your life.
We have a lifetime of choices to make. Make the choice now and choose your consequences well.
Monday, January 05, 2009
Thursday, January 01, 2009
Lion Chaser Manifesto
Chase the lion.
In a Pit with a Lion on a Snowy Day by Mark Batterson (www.evotional.com)