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Who Are You Going to Be?
Photo: Jeremy Jenum
During your freshman year of college, the basic questions that anyone (and everyone) is bound to ask you are: Where are you from? What’s your major? What dorm do you live in?
During your senior year of college, the stakes seemed to be raised just a bit and the questions become: What’s your degree in? Are you going to grad school? What are you going to do? (Aka: Do you have a job? Where is it? How much money will you make?)
It is both humorous and frightening to recognize this difference and face the reality that what the world expects of you looks a lot more like a big paycheck and a lot less like a passionate life.
I recently talked about this struggle with a dear friend of mine as she was planning her wedding. She shared how frustrated she was that people only seemed interested in knowing where she and her fiancé would live and work after the wedding. “It doesn’t matter what we do,” she lamented, “doesn’t anyone care who we are going to be?!”
You see, what you do is important because it’s how you choose to use the precious time that Jesus has given you on this earth. But I want to probe… who are you going to be? What is going to define your character? How are you going to be transformed into the likeness of Christ?
Deciding who you are going to be may sound a bit ridiculous. “No one really chooses these things, it just happens, right?” I would argue otherwise. For who you choose to be is the most important decision you will make, and it is a decision that you have complete control over. It’s like the cliché statement, “You don’t have control over what happens around you, but you have control over how you react to it.”
When we not only heed the commands of Scripture that dictate what we do, but we allow the lifestyle of Jesus to shape our decisions and rewrite our habits, our character will begin to follow suit.
“Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves. Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Share with God’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality. Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited. Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everybody. If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everybody.”
Imagine how different your life would look if you let this passage characterize your daily life? How would your relationships change? How would it transform your attitude?
Jonathan Edwards was a theologian who lived in the 18th Century. He took it upon himself to write a list of resolutions for his life. These resolutions were set to govern him in everything he did. Here’s an example: “Resolution 56: Resolved, never to give over, nor in the least to slacken, my fight with my corruptions, however unsuccessful I may be.” In layman’s terms: “I resolve to never stop fighting my sin, no matter how often I fail.” Not a bad goal to set, if you ask me.
Making a conscious decision to live for Jesus, walk in obedience, and pursue righteousness is by no means easy. It is far easier, and far more comfortable, to live for yourself and to delight in sin. But fighting for righteousness and following the commands of Jesus will develop character that enables you to “fight the good fight, finish the race, and keep the faith” (2 Timothy 3:7).
I’ll be the first to speak of the importance of finding the thing you were made to do and pursuing it with all your heart – this matters immensely. It is important that you do your very best in school, find a job, and work as the best employee your workplace has ever seen…
But tonight, I want to challenge you to consider it of deeper importance and greater worth to not only know what you want to do, but to discover who you are going to be.
[box_help]Sound Off: What will it take to be who God called you to be? Consider that this might require a tough choice or two.[/box_help]
About Jennifer GwendolynJennifer is passionate about seeing people come alive with God's truth and she believes with all her heart that once they do, they will be wrecked for anything less. Jennifer loves the sunshine and could watch the clouds forever. She will never turn down an opportunity to travel or a bowl of ice cream, and she finds absolutely nothing sweeter than the sound of laughter.
Christian Shoddy is Still Shoddy
A tense cloud hovered above the desk that separated us....
- Posted 50 days ago
We Are Not Hoodlums.
I think we've all been there. You've scoured the Christian...
- Posted 52 days ago
Of Hobbits and Angels
After seeing the new Hobbit movie (in 3D nonetheless), and...
- Posted 62 days ago
Rags to Riches and Back to Rags Again
I love a good rags-to-riches story. Sam “Walmart” Walton sold...
- Posted 72 days ago
Are We There Yet?
A few months ago, my family and I moved from...
- Posted 81 days ago
Verse of the Week
––1 Thessalonians 5:21 (ESV)