Points to Ponder:A human doing or a human being?
Points to Ponder
A human doing or a human being?
Do you have a mission statement for yourself? How do you stay focused and on the right path, particularly when temptations come? Are you defined by what you do or is who you are the reason you do what you do? Author Wayne Dyer says, "If you are what you do, then if you don't - you aren't."
The "mid-life crisis," bouts of depression with feelings of uselessness, can suddenly come upon people who lack a sense of purpose. Consider: are you a human being or just a human doing. Perhaps you keep yourself so busy so you won't have to think about that.
A man heading east on a long trip with his wife, mistakenly turns onto the westbound interstate. He sets the cruise control to 65 mph and settles back for the ride. His wife points out that he's going in the wrong direction. He replies with a confident grin: "Yeah, but we're making good time!" (When he arrived at the Pacific Ocean, he probably stopped grinning.) Many of us run our daily lives like that, only to look back and wonder what we've done with our time; climbing a ladder that was leaning against the wrong wall. Making good time till our time was up.
A colleague who counsels pastors asked me if I had a mission statement or a set of principles that helps to keep me focused on my call. Here are a few that I shared:
(1) If my ego gets puffed up and I start thinking I'm "all that;" or, I become 'needy,' longing for approval and affirmation, I recall to mind First Corinthians. Paul writes that God chooses what seems foolish to this world in order to confound what seems to be wise (1:26-29).
(2) If I'm going through the "wilderness," unsure whether I should stay put or move on, the psalmist reminds me:
"Delight yourself in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart" (Psalm 37:4).
Find out what God is doing there, and do your best to delight in it; be a part of it till He moves you.
(3) Proverbs 22:1 reminds me of the value of keeping my name clean.
"A good name is to be chosen rather than great riches, loving favor rather than silver and gold."
(4) Psalm 15 reminds me of integrity, to stand for the truth even if it costs. It is he who "walks uprightly and works righteousness, and speaks the truth in his heart," the person of character, who abides with the Lord. His word is reliable, because he will "swear to his own hurt" and will not compromise the truth to obtain a short-term gain.
(5) And this is "foremost in my mind," I wrote to my friend: "Life is short, then you die. That day draws closer as I go. I have a limited time left. Is what I'm occupying myself with of eternal significance? Am I busy about the King's business; or just busy?"
These five and several other principles are rooted in the scriptures. They stood firm before I arrived in the world; they'll stand firm long after I've left. I try to view this brief journey on earth from the perspective of heaven-down, rather than earth-up.
It's encouraging, even exhilarating at times, to realize I am on a mission from God. I am part of something that's bigger than me. And what God spoke to a teenager some 600 years before Jesus, certainly could apply to any of us. Think about what His words mean for you:
"Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you . . ." (Jeremiah 1:5).
Points to Ponder is a series of occasional articles written by Rev. Dennis Whitmore, Pastor of Hilltop Christian Fellowship, 12624 Trinity Church Drive, Clear Spring, MD (1/4 mile east of Clear Spring on Rt. 40). Listen to Pastor Dennis on WJEJ-1240 AM, Tues and Thurs, at 10:45am and 7:50pm, both days. www.hilltopchristianfellowship.com.