Dying 2 Live...!

Dying 2 Live...!

Saturday, April 17, 2010

The Choice is Ours

Many times in life one has to become ever cognizant of the fact that life is full of choices. Life has ups and downs along with neutral moments. Moreover, much of life is filled with precarious decisions that will determine essential things. Yes, many things in life will occur merely from osmosis, but not everything will be an automatic moment totally out of your control. Some things will have the availability for your choice to intervene within the conclusion.

The Bible states, 'I call heaven and earth to witness this day against you that I have set before you life and death, the blessings and the curses; therefore choose life, that you and your descendants may live' from Deuteronomy 30:19 (Amplified Version). A key point God was getting across was that, in life, we DO have a CHOICE. Therefore, we have to share much of the responsibility for our actions. Unfortunately, we can't justifiably live out a life of excuses and expect God to always accept them.

Now, I'm not suggesting that we never face issues or problems that are out of our control. But, God still wants us owning up to what's actually in our control. We may not be responsible for the 90% but we are responsible for the 10%. We may not have initiated the fight but we are responsible for retaliating once the fight has started. We may not have even put ourselves into a particular dreadful situation, but we are responsible for how we're going to get out of the situation. One thing about Adam & Eve is not so much they'd sinned, but convincingly decided to blame the sin away. They blamed each other, the serpent, and even had the audacity to blame God.

Interesting enough, we tend to respond much like Adam and Eve---even while in the 21st century. Rarely do we hear words like, "I admit it was my fault...I take full responsibility for the problem...I'm the one who messed up...I responded wrongly and accept the consequences that must follow!" Rather, we're more apt to blame, spew out excuses, and continuously point fingers at others. One thing about growth, as a Christian, is a new willingness for personal change in behavior---particularly in the area of sin. Before we seek to work on others, we need to be more eager to work on ourselves first. Many people will respect the witness of your life much quicker than the witness of your voice! Let's always remember, the choice is ours and will have the responsibility to change from the inside out (our attitudes, moods, hearts, minds, and perspectives).

Thursday, April 1, 2010

The High Road

Boy oh boy, me and some of my fellas' were playing some basketball one weekend not that long ago, and it happened. We got tried...! Yeah, this dude came out of no where and joined our game in a three-on-three match up. So, we went along with it and went to hooping on the b-ball court.

The main problem occurred when 'that dude' started mouthing off like he was grand. Not only that, he began to direct much of the verbiage to me. Despite my size and calmness, it doesn't take too much to rile me up (something God is working on me deeply). Hey, I started mouthing off back at him. As a grown man, I'm not with the bullying. At the moment of things nearing an escalating stage, something happened!

We brought focus back to the basketball game at hand and off of the jerk causing all the ruckus. In other words, we took the high road. The high road is a road less traveled by many and it's sort of similar to the narrow road in Matthew 7:13-14. To be honest, we were on the verge of making a stupid decision and thankfully God brought us back to our senses. We have to be ever cognoscente of the fact that, as Christians, we're "born again---new creations" and the old us has passed away. In other words, we have a new nature that we should be working on implementing and shouldn't be so enticed to revert back to our old nature.

After the basketball incident, we conversed about how the dude was itching for a fight at any cost. He wanted to fight even if he was going to lose. He didn't care. A friend of mine denoted that this individual was being influenced by demons. Also, we became vaguely aware that the situation could have ended up with us getting shot or worse (physically dying)---all over a basketball game. In hindsight, I became more aware of the truth that "hurting people seek to hurt people." See, this individual could have been having a bad day, and it's no telling what kind of devastating issues had just transpired in his life. God noted that the POWER OF LOVE is the greatest healer. It can heal every hurt! Love covers a multitude of sins (1 Peter 4:8).

The unfortunate thing is that I was reluctant to show love but was more concerned with standing my ground. More important, I know that I'm NOT ALONE in thinking like that. Most men are taught to be macho instead of loving. I know we have always heard the saying, "I'm a lover not a fighter." Many of us should take this more to heart.