“Don’t be as concerned about the destination, as what God is doing in you in the journey.”
Last Sunday, the TRBC college pastor kicked off a new series in the college group titled, “You’ll Be Glad You Did.” The first message? Simply, choices matter. Every day, every person, everywhere faces choices, some bigger than others. A typical day for a college student starts with making the decision to get up on time for that 8:50 class to what to eat for lunch to whether or not to work on homework or browse Pinterest instead. Sure, those are simple decisions, but how we handle the small decisions reflects how we will handle larger decisions.
The pastor gave the analogy of building a house.
Each brick represents a choice. The foundation of your house is built on the choices you make. And let’s be honest, we all want a pretty nice house, right?
This analogy alludes to the parable in Matthew of the wise and foolish man:
“Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on the house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock. And everyone who hears these words of mine and does not do them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat against the house, and it fell, and great was the fall of it.” Matthew 7:24-27
Christ encourages us to be like the wise man, who built his house upon a solid foundation that endured the raging storms. In the same manner, we are to use wisdom in the decisions we make, forming a solid foundation, so when the storms of life come (and they will), we are better prepared to withstand them.
This isn’t breaking news or a shocking discovery, so why blog about it? Because choices are the GPS of my life, instructing me when to stop, when to turn, and occasionally when to “recalculate.” Choices such as…
Choice to…attend Liberty University…and major in Advertising/Public Relations
Choice to…leave my job of 2 years at Chick-fil-A
Choice to…start my master’s degree at age 19
And the list goes on. What to study? Where to live? Which jobs to apply to? How to budget my money? It seems everywhere I turn I am faced with decisions. That’s normal. The question is: How do I handle those choices? To quote John Maxwell, “Life is as much about making choices as it is managing those choices.”
For example, if I make a choice to eat junk food while at the same time trying to lose weight, I have to manage that choice and the consequences that come with it, namely weight GAIN instead of weight LOSS. Choosing to wait on God’s timing is managed by being patient and actually believing what I say I believe which is God’s timing IS perfect and His plans ARE to “give me hope and a future.” But boy, is that easier said than done!
This same Sunday, the pastor talked briefly about his background and how he came to Virginia. Not to my surprise, he too has a “God” story. Several years ago, the Lord called him and his wife to Lynchburg. Why? At the time, they didn’t know. Neither of them had secured a job yet, but they packed up and journeyed to Lynchburg anyway. Three hours into the trip, he got a call from Thomas Road Baptist Church, asking him to join their college ministry staff. Talk about a leap of faith!
Almost 3 years ago, my family and I took a similar leap of faith that brought us to Lynchburg, VA. The journey has been full of bumps, curves and unexpected sharp turns. But then that is what life is. One long journey. I suppose that is why this simple message hit me so hard. It’s a simple concept with a difficult application.
In 5th grade Sunday School, my mom wrote a creative “rap” to help teach her students the importance of filtering everything through a biblical worldview. It goes like this:
The thoughts that I believe, the things that I receive,
The choices that I make, the actions that I take,
They MATTER, uh huh, they matter, oh yeah!
This cheesy, but clever ‘worldview rap’ has stuck with me for close to 10 years. The baseline takeaway: Choices matter. We are all in the business of building a house. Question is, what kind of house are we building and on what foundation are we building it?