Forty years from now, if God grants me the time. I will be in ministry. I won’t be thinking about retirement, or settling down with my wife. Forty years from now the world will spin differently, nations may be at peace or chaos, and Christianity may either rise, or fall. My life today matters forty years from now. It doesn’t matter in a sense that I need to “make a name” for myself, or “establish myself well” where I am at. My life today will matter forty years from where my feet rest because God will still be deserving of all the glory that is in the earth. What am I to do? Seek His righteousness. Pursue holiness. Make Biblical minded decisions. The most significant decision had been made over a thousand years ago when God chose me for Himself. He is my source of breath, and He is my source of salvation. Why do I pick forty years? It is a completely random number. In forty years I will be 73,and most people that are 73 today have lived a whole life. Farmers have gained acres for their cattle. Men who served in the army have stories. Former athletes have their high school sweethearts, and memories of football back in their day. When I am 73; what will I tell? Will I continue to proclaim something old? Something forgotten? Something outdated? Jesus Christ is none of these descriptions. He is lasting in relevance because we need Him every hour. He is the same yesterday, today, and forever. Therefore in forty years He is needed then. There must be someone to proclaim His message. There will never be a hold on telling others about Jesus. Forty years from now will I be telling others about Jesus or about me?
That leads in to why my decisions today will impact others 40 years from now. I have worked at a bookstore here in the small quiet college town of Russellville, AR for two years. I am starting seminary August 19th, and I have been looking for a full-time job. The bookstore has been so good to me. The Lord was evident in providing a part-time job for me while I was in college. Now since before the beginning of summer I have been looking for full-time work. I have graduated with a degree I may never use, and little field work in the area of my degree. That poses a problem in getting a job. The problem isn’t there being any work. The problem was that I never sought out work in my field while I was at college. I set my focus on ministry and the Lord helped me find my way in teaching, discipling, and serving a college ministry on campus as well as in my church. I should’ve balanced my time so I could have written for the school newspaper. I saw others that did, but I was too set on ministry. I could complain on this blog post, but that wouldn’t benefit you.
Since I was 18 I started seeing my mistakes and learning from them. Year by year I noticed bad habits, respectable sins, and corrections from friends that loved me. I still see them today. I hope to always be on the look out. Grace keeps me. Mistakes make me humble. This person that I am being molded into day by day hopefully is looking more like Jesus. Paul Washer in a sermon on 1 John chapter 2 said, “We may look silly, we may miss the mark, and at times we may have to really reach with our feet to step in the place of his (Jesus) but we must “walk as He walked” My hope is that I am doing this. I may barely make it, and look silly. But I would rather walk as He did than walk in darkness. Developing my character in the grace of God is a tremendous work. I could go these next several months bitter, jealous, and impatient, but that wouldn’t be the “way of escape” that my Lord provides so that I would “endure it”. It being the temptation to blame God, the temptation that says, “God isn’t being faithful to you” or “God has forgotten about you”. He has done neither. This time of waiting for a full-time job, a wife, and if the Lord wills my own flock to lead it will be in His timing, and through my testing. He is shaping my character and conforming me to the image of His Son. He is patient, and merciful. Here is a verse I was reading preparing to teach youth in two weeks.
“Let him who boasts boast in this, that he understands and knows me, that I am the Lord who practices steadfast love, justice, and righteousness in the earth. For in these things I delight, declares the Lord.” Jeremiah 9:23
This will matter in 40 years if I am knowing, understanding the way of the Lord and practicing who He is.
This is not my photo. This was copied fromhttp://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/0/06/Turun_palo_1827.jpg/800px-Turun_palo_1827.jpg