[CF Devotionals] 2011-08-26 - This Thing Called Life

Part 1 ~ Originally Preached to Youth 2007-10-24

What is life? What analogies work with life? There are many such short words of wisdom: Life's a beach, life is like a box of chocolates, and many more. Songs like "Stairway to Heaven" kind of allude to one of my favorite life analogies - life's a journey. Think about it you get born at some place on the map then you go this way and that making decisions about your direction all the time. That brings me to the first point I want to park on for a minute.

Life has turns. At each turn you can change the path or road you're on. This is even a theme in much of our culture. The most popular rock song of all time, "Stairway to Heaven", says, "Yes there are two paths you can go by"

Going back a bit further to the works of Robert Frost from Mountain Interval published in 1916.

The Road Not Taken

Two Roads Diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I--
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

Going even further back to around 25 AD, we find the words of Jesus written in the Gospel of Matthew.

Matthew 7 (NKJV)
  1. "Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it.
  2. 14 Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.

The journey of life means choosing which paths to take and which ones to pass on.

That brings me to the second point. At each intersection there are choices.

You have to decide what to do with your morning. You can wake-up early, pray and maybe eat breakfast with your family or you can wake up five minutes before time to leave and rush through everything. You have to decide what to do with your lunch time. Maybe God tells you to go left and sit with the lonely kid who's secretly contemplating suicide. Maybe friends want you to sit with them and talk about the football game last weekend. You have to decide what to do with your evening. You can go to your room and study for hours for the test tomorrow or you can study 15 minutes and go to the living room and watch TV for hours.

Admittedly not all decisions are so cut and dry sometimes its simply do I email, text, or call a friend to see what he wants to do this weekend. But that's still a choice. So life is a series of choices or turns on a journey.

God has a definite route laid out for us causing us to go this way and that. But we don't always follow his path.

We start off in Columbus and he wants us to take 85 straight to Atlanta then go out I-20 into South Carolina but we decide to take little detour in LaGrange. Zigzag our way around back roads to Moreland get back on 85 for a little ways then cut back off again to pursue money and the good life in Peachtree City. So we wind up taking 54 to state 85 and getting up to 285 only to find lane closures and wrecks taking us an extra three hours to get to I-20. We eventually get back on track with God's route but things aren't just as he had planned for us. Our detours cost us on the journey. We'll get to Myrtle Beach still but have less time and money to enjoy it with.

So we have to examine our options in life. We have to decide whether things are part of the narrow path or one of a million things out on the wide path.

Until next time when we look at the two paths.


[email adam] acdum@hotmail.com

All scripture references from KJV unless otherwise noted