Working on a Dream




Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Meeting my Destiny part III: Jesus

It has been said that a person often meets his destiny on the road he took to avoid it. Life is like that. Even now as I write this, I can think back to times in my life where something totally unplanned changed it.

Three examples come to mind: Bruce, Christen, Jesus. Over the next week, I'll choose one and write about it. I hope you join me!

Destiny encounter number three:  Jesus

The challenge so far has been filtering what to say, what not to say, where to start and where to end.

This one may be the biggest challenge of all...

On the one hand, I could say that this journey started out when I was a little boy staying at my Nonnon's house.  In the morning, she would sit at the dining room table; grab an old pair of glasses, and a Bible.  Most times, she would already be up, and when I would walk downstairs, I would see her reading.  Nonnon would invite me to sit next to her and she would start reading the Bible out-loud to me

...In Italian. 

See, Nonnon's Bible was not in English, so I did not understand a word she was saying.  But I did feel her love for Jesus.  It just oozed out of her.  As the day turned into night, and bedtime approached, the final part of her day was kneeling in prayer right in front of a lit picture of Jesus. In this picture, His arms were open and I got the feeling from the picture that He was ready to embrace anyone at anytime, for anything.  Again, if you were to ask me to repeat her prayers, I could not.  They were in another language...But I was fully aware that the person she was praying to was no stranger to her.  She loved Jesus and it showed in the way she would talk to Him.

Years latter, I found myself a Senior in high school.  The time in between was filled with the stuff of everything a boy does from the ages of 13-18.  Sports, hanging out with friends, thinking that everything I/we did was the most important event in the history of the world...

Then one day, I was invited to a church camp called Mahaffey and it was there I met a fellow named Pastor Dave Glass.  His impact was felt immediately....literally his introduction was a tackle.  Soon after, I started attending youth group and became interested in this "Christian life." Youth group was filled with fun, fellowship and a hearty dose of preaching.  Most people complained about the preaching and wanted more fun, but I never really cared about the games.  I had the idea that church is where the Bible is preached, so if you wanted fun and games  --join the basketball team. 

Anyway, some time passed, and I was seeing my friends dedicating their lives to Jesus. The really powerful element about this was that their lives were being changed.  I saw new commitments, new lifestyles, and new passions arise in them.  This made a very big impact on me. 

Soon after, I started going to church and youth group and on one Sunday night in October, a man named Pastor Don Jones stood up and preached a message that has changed my life.  He talked about sin, its consequences, and how to have a right relationship with God.  I found myself broken inside.  I remember sitting in the back of the church and just wanting to run up front, and give my life to this Jesus.

But I didn't.  I didn't know how. 

After the service, I talked with some trusted people, and I made my mind up that the next week, I was going to ask this Jesus in my life.  As the next week rolled around, I made my way to the church and walked into the service with 10 minutes remaining.  I had my Jerry Rice jersey on and just walked up front to the alter.  There I was met by Pastor Dave and there I embraced Jesus. 

That was over 10 years ago. Since that time I have went on to Bible College to major in Youth Ministry, received a Master of Divinity, and currently am working on my second Master's degree, which is Organizational Leadership.  I say this not to brag, but to bring up the point that before Jesus, I had no plan, no direction, no real purpose. 

David says in the Psalms that "God took him from the miry clay and put his feet upon a rock."  (Psalm 40).  In a real way, I was drowning in the mire and did not even know it.  My life was filled but it was empty with anything of substance. 

Sometimes I sit and I wonder...
-Where would my life be without Jesus? 
-What would I be doing today?

You see, I was drowning, not in water, but in something else.  A purposeless life. 
The Apostle Paul says that "He considers everything a loss compared to knowing Christ."  I have a feeling that he would understand just what I am saying here about an aimless life. 

In the end
My Destiny was to meet the One who sets Destiny in motion. 

The One that is responsible for all my other meetings with destiny. 

Is it time you met your Destiny? 
Is it time for you to stop trying to keep your head above water and fighting the waves?
Embrace Jesus.  His arms are open wide. 
For You.
Any time  Any place  Any person

"Come to Me, all who are heavy of heart and I will give you rest." 

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