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It Begins With Me

“Only one life, ’twill soon be past, Only what’s done for Christ will last.” CT Studd

I had a birthday a while back. I turned 60. I know, you can't believe that. With my boyish good looks and never ending energy, you were sure I was on a twenty something. Or, you thought about my sense of humor and then decided I may be only 12 or somewhere thereabout. But, it is in fact true. I turned 60. Now understand, I didn't meet this milestone birthday with a sense of dread, nor did I have to have antidepressants dripped in by IV. It was just another birthday, one that I feel like I've earned, in the way that a year's worth of living makes you glad to have made it through and look forward to another year. What my 60th birthday did was make me examine what it is that matters most. I've got 40 years before I make the cover a Smucker's jelly jar, so what am I going to do moving forward? And, what it is that really matters from here on out?

It wasn't very long before I ran across this quote from CT Studd. CT Studd was a missionary and a cricket player. He loved the game. I don't know anything about cricket, but I get the love of sport, I like football and basketball, but I love baseball. So I get who he was in that but his First love was Jesus and his heart was in getting the Gospel of Jesus into the lives of people. I believe that he spent his ministry as a missionary in India, but he understood that when Jesus told us to "go and make disciples" that he was speaking to believers. He was talking to men like CT Studd, but He was also speaking to us. He was speaking to me. HE WAS SPEAKING TO YOU, TOO!

CT Studd understood his call. He understood the call of all believers. He understood that for each and every one of us the only thing that matters is what we do. Not what we do for our vocation necessarily, but what we do that leaves an eternal mark. What we do for Jesus is what matters most. It is the thing that will leave a ripple through time. We make a mark on the life of a single individual today and for the rest of that person's life every person they bring into the kingdom comes as a result of what you did. So if Studd says, "Only one life, ’twill soon be past, Only what’s done for Christ will last.” What he says is, this life is way shorter than we anticipate. Yesterday, it seems I was in high school sleeping through way too many classes but having a ton of fun. Today I'm 60. It seems like just yesterday I looked into the eyes of the most beautiful woman on the planet and said, "I do". Today we've been married 38 years. It seems like yesterday that I sat on the front porch of an old guy (he was 83 years old at the time) and shared Jesus with him. 38 years ago, this life long unchurched man accepted Jesus. That matters forever.

So you see, the question is important. If it starts with me, then what am I doing? If Jesus meant for me to go out and make disciples then how am I doing. Think about this. There are people you know that may only find their way to a relationship with Christ if YOU teach them how to get there. There may be someone out there whose eternity depends on you loving them enough to tell them how much Jesus means to you. It starts with You and me. How are we doing?

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