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By: Dennis Bates
We have no choice about what we do last in this life. We die. It’s as simple as that. But as Christians, it isn’t death we should fear. It’s not living that we should be afraid of.
We all have choices in life, lots of them, but making the right choice is only the beginning, not the end. It’s what we do with that right choice that matters. It is how we react to that Frostian two-road dilemma after we choose that really defines us. It may be our choice of the road less taken that starts us down the path, but it is how we walk that path once we chose it that makes all the difference.
It does not matter if we chose to walk down the path that was grassy and wanted wear if, after making that choice, we do nothing to tramp down the grass along the way. How will anyone even know we’ve been there? For as in Adam all die, but in Christ we are made alive. And we weren’t made alive to just enjoy the serenity of the path that is grassy and wanting wear. We were made alive to walk down it.
I’m with James on this one. Knowing that there is a path and choosing it in our minds is nothing. It is faith without works, and it is so very, very dead. Belief without action is pretty useless. I know that some would say that Paul says we are justified by faith and not by works. I don’t dispute that, but I’m not talking about some sort of justification here. I’m talking about life and living it so it does somebody some good besides you. After all, only worrying about you is rather selfish if you stop to think about it.
Look at Paul’s life if you think he meant that faith alone is enough. He didn’t sit on his faith; he went everywhere he could, preaching about it and telling people how to live better lives. And in the end he paid the ultimate price for doing so.
For that matter, the Man that he believed in and called Lord did the same thing. Jesus, as the Son of God, didn’t have to do anything, but he did. He didn’t just pick an interesting path; he walked down it. He fed the hungry, healed the sick, forgave the sinners and ultimately walked the path to his crucifixion.
This Man who could calm a storm, walk on water, and change water into wine didn’t have to prove himself to anybody. He was from God and going back there. He did what he did to show us that if we truly want to follow Him, if we really believe that we are justified by faith, then we have to do more than just talk about it. It’s not enough to shout hallelujah or believe quietly in our hearts that we are saved and then slink off timidly down the sidewalk.
We need to walk boldly down the path we choose. We need to ignore the signs that say “Keep off the Grass,” and walk on it, stomp on it, wear it down and wear it out. Jesus will walk down that path with us; He’s been there before. Then and only then does choosing the path less traveled make all the difference.
By: Dennis Bates I coughed in her ear. That’s all! I coughed in her ear. Is that a sin in any religion? Did I come home late Smelling of another? No. Did I forget our anniversary, her birthday, our first date? No. I coughed in her ear. We were lying next to each…
By: Dennis Bates One of my favorite lines from the play “My Fair Lady” comes from the slightly pompous and very proper Professor Henry Higgins when he rails about how different nationalities speak. When he gets to the French, he has this to say: “The French never care what they do, actually, as…
By: Dennis Bates The Olympics: two weeks of sleep deprivation that comes once every four years. In some ways we can be happy it doesn’t come more often for just that reason. In spite of my personal pledge to ignore the spectacle this time, I find myself glued to the coverage every night…
By: Dennis Bates One of my favorite Gaither songs begins “Jesus, Jesus, Jesus, there’s just something about that name.” That’s so true. Names are important. Think about your own name for a minute. It almost defines you. If you ask somebody who they are, more times than not they will respond by…