Summary: Gods plans for our lives are better than ours. A Message to Victory Outreach the Ranch men's and woman's Victory Home. What God has in His mind is the best Hyphen that we would ever live.
Psalms 90;2- So teach us to number our days that we may get a heart of wisdom.
This past weekend was an emotional one. Actually the whole month of March is a pretty hard month for me personally. As most of you know I am from the city of Chicago and Chicago can be a very dangerous place. Each year the city tops the charts in crime and murder rates. Chicago is heavily active in gang violence, drug dealing, organized crime, theft and robbery. I was personally involved in all these for 10 long years. I lived a fast paced, dangerous, violent, kill or be killed lifestyle. I was involved in gang violence, and addicted to 4 different hard drugs. I was a liar, a murderer and a thief.
In the city of Chicago during the months of March and April the weather begins to warm up and springs comes forth. Unfortunately with warm weather and spring season approaching comes the time when gang violence, and organized crime becomes more and more active. During the month of March alone over 10 years I have lost a handful of cousins, and at least 50 plus friends, and fellow gang members.
and so normally we would visit the grave sites and tombstones of those that have lost. Millions of people each month visit the graveyards and remember and reminisce of those who have gone on before us. Many of you have put flowers on your loved ones graves and have reminisced a little on how life was like when they were still alive.
The cemetery can actually be a very interesting place. Sometimes you can find out a lot about a person from their tombstone. If you were to walk through a graveyard you would see several of the grave sites decorated lavishly with lights, flowers, and pictures and all kinds of little nick knacks. It can be obvious to us that some of the people who were buried were sports fans, while some enjoyed hinting or fishing, and others had certain hobbies. Some people were known by many and some not so many. Looking at old tombstones, can at times give you a glimpse of what that person was like when they were alive. but when in comes right down to it each persons life comes down to two dates and a hyphen, the day you are born, the day you die and the hyphen that separates those two dates. The hyphen in the middle represents the life in between the two dates. This little hyphen is supposed to represent a lifetime.
If you think about it in this lifetime there are many things we will absolutely no control over. We don't get to decide who our parents are, when were born, or the culture we are born into. We don't get to decide the dates on our tombstones.( if you decide to commit suicide then I guess you can choose one of those dates.) but other than that we don't know when our time on this earth will be up. It can be today, tomorrow, next week or next year. Hopefully for all of us here today it will be years and decades from now. But really no one knows but God, and if there is one thing we do have control over and that is how we are going to live out our lives. How are we going to live our our hyphens? Ask yourself when my time is done and at the end of my life how would my loved one, how would my family and friends describe my hyphen.
The title of today's message is " Describe My Hyphen'
That's what I want to share with you this morning. One of the saddest reality of today generation and the generations before is that many people are now dead and diseased and the rest of the world would describe their hyphen as not the best life that someone should live. At their funerals and life celebrations we can say the nicest things about them and how they were loved and now will be missed, and yet in the back of their minds there is the feeling of disappointment and regret that they didn't live their life up to their fullest potential.
More closer than that there are millions of people who are alive right now, millions of people who still have time on this earth that have the same feeling of disappointment and regret that they have not lived the life they really wanted to live. That they haven't lived the best life they could have lived and now before their death date, before their hyphen is complete, before their time is done they would describe their own lives as a waste of time and potential.
I don't know about you but I made a decision 8 years ago that I don't want to wast any more time. At the young age of 22 as I looked back on my life as a young man I had nothing to show for it. If my life would have ended then and there I would be in that same pool of millions who wasted their lives, whose hyphen would be described as not the best life to lookup to and relive. and that when I made the best decision of my life . To accept the Lord Jesus Christ into my life into my heart and I allowed him to change who I was and the way I lived. I began a relationship I began this walk with the one whose time is unlimited. I began to have a personal and intimate relationship with the one true living God. and since then, going on 8 years now. I am proud of the life I have lived in Christ. I have had my ups and my down, I've had my seasons on the mountain top and my seasons in the valley low. Regardless of good or bad conditions the last 8 years of my life have been the best years I have ever lived and I know there is more in store. I know that God has a special plan for my life and he has one for your life as well.