Summary: There is a good life, a better life and a best life.
INTRO.- We’re all given choices in life. Some good, some better and some best.
ILL.- The college faculty was in their annual meeting when, suddenly, an angel appears. Turning to the Dean, the angel said, "I will grant you one of three choices -- infinite wisdom, infinite wealth or infinite health."
The Dean thought for a minute, then replied "Wisdom." "So be it." And the angel disappeared.
In the silence that followed, the Dean sat thoughtfully, saying nothing and staring off into the distance. Finally, one of the other faculty members exclaimed, "Do you have anything to say? What words of wisdom can you give us?" Said the Dean, "I should have taken the money."
I think that perhaps in our day and time most people would have chosen the money as well. We figure that money may well be the “wisest” choice and we hope to buy some good health with it.
We all are given many choices in life and perhaps more than we realize.
ILL.- Jerry was the kind of guy you love to hate. He was always in a good mood and always had something positive to say. When someone would ask him how he was doing, he would reply, "If I were any better, I would be twins!" He was a unique manager because he had several waiters who had followed him around from restaurant to restaurant. The reason the waiters followed Jerry was because of his attitude.
He was a natural motivator. If an employee was having a bad day, Jerry was there, telling the employee how to look on the positive side of the situation.
A friend said to Jerry one day, "I don’t get it! You can’t be a positive person all of the time. How do you do it?"
Jerry replied, "Each morning I wake up and say to myself, ‘Jerry, you have two choices today. You can choose to be in a good mood or you can choose to be in a bad mood.’ I choose to be in a good mood. Each time something bad happens, I can choose to be a victim or I can choose to learn from it. I choose to learn from it. Every time someone comes to me complaining, I can choose to accept their complaining or I can point out the positive side of life. I choose the positive side of life."
"Yeah, right, it’s not that easy," his friend protested. "Yes it is," Jerry said. "Life is all about choices. When you cut away all the junk, every situation is a choice. You choose how you react to situations. You choose how people will affect your mood. You choose to be in a good mood or bad mood. The bottom line: It’s your choice how you live life."
Brothers and sisters, I believe this Jerry is right. This matter of choice is given in Scripture.
Deut. 30:19 “This day I call heaven and earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live.”
We have the choice of life or death. We can choose to live as fully as possible by following the Lord or we can choose the cursed way of life by turning away from the Lord.
Josh. 24:15 “If serving the LORD seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your forefathers served beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD ."
People choose whom they wish to serve in life even when they don’t realize it. If they don’t choose to serve the true and living God then they will serve another god, even if that god is self.
PROP.- For most of us, there are three roads that can be taken in life. And generally, they are a matter of choice.
1- The Good Life – born and raised in America
2- The Better Life – born again and raised in the church
3- The Best Life – buried and rejoicing in heaven
I. THE GOOD LIFE
Born and raised in America.
I Tim. 6:17 “Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment.”
This Scripture can apply to any and all rich people of the world, but it definitely applies to most of us who have been born and raised in America.
ILL.- HE GREW UP poor in West Texas, but Edwin C. of Knoxville, Tennessee says his family was always "in the chips"...cow chips, that is. "Wood was scarce," Edwin explains, "so in winter, we had to burn cow chips for heat. Our family had a few cattle, but not enough to supply fuel for the winter. So we ’mined’ the chips left behind by herds driven past our place to market."