Summary: When John Owen, the great Puritan, lay on his deathbed his secretary wrote (in his name) to a friend, "I am still in the land of the living." "Stop," said Owen. "Change that and say, I am yet in the land of the dying, but I hope soon to be in the land of
When John Owen, the great Puritan, lay on his deathbed his secretary wrote (in his name) to a friend, "I am still in the land of the living." "Stop," said Owen. "Change that and say, I am yet in the land of the dying, but I hope soon to be in the land of the living."
1 Cast your bread upon the waters, for you will find it after many days. 2 Give a serving to seven, and also to eight, for you do not know what evil will be on the earth. 3 If the clouds are full of rain, they empty themselves upon the earth; and if a tree falls to the south or the north, in the place where the tree falls, there it shall lie. 4 He who observes the wind will not sow, and he who regards the clouds will not reap. 5 As you do not know what is the way of the wind, or how the bones grow in the womb of her who is with child, so you do not know the works of God who makes everything. 6 In the morning sow your seed, and in the evening do not withhold your hand; for you do not know which will prosper, either this or that, or whether both alike will be good.
7 Truly the light is sweet, and it is pleasant for the eyes to behold the sun; 8 but if a man lives many years and rejoices in them all, yet let him remember the days of darkness, for they will be many. All that is coming is vanity. 9 Rejoice, O young man, in your youth, And let your heart cheer you in the days of your youth; Walk in the ways of your heart, And in the sight of your eyes; But know that for all these God will bring you into judgment. 10 Therefore remove sorrow anger & resentment – i.e. rebellion from your heart, and put away evil pain from your flesh, for childhood and youth are vanity.
Living in the Land of the Dying
Introduction – Living with Gusto!
There was once an elderly gentleman who loved playing golf. But he was almost eighty, and his vision was not very good anymore. He always had partners with him when he went out to play so they could watch his ball and tell him where it went. One day his buddies did not show up. It was a beautiful day for golf, and as he waited at the clubhouse he got more and more upset that he wasn’t going to get to play his round. Another elderly man in the clubhouse saw him and asked, “What’s wrong?” The man explained his predicament: “I was really looking forward to playing golf today. But I don’t see very well anymore, so I need someone to watch the ball after I hit.” The second man was even older than he was, but he said, “That’s no problem. I’ll be glad to ride around with you. I’ve got 20/20 vision. I can see like a hawk. You just hit the ball, and I’ll watch it fly right down the fairway.” So they went out on the first tee, and the old man hit the ball right down the center. He turned to his spotter. “Did you see it?” The man replied, “I saw it all the way until it stopped rolling.” “Well, where did it go?” The older man paused for a moment and then said, “I forgot.”
Even the best-laid plans don’t always work out—that’s a reality we all have to face every day. So how should you live when you’re not sure how things are going to turn out? Solomon says, “Don’t play it safe—take risks.”
We have a PATH to follow 1-6
Principle #1 Live life generously (with an open heart & open hands) 1-2
Invest in life 1a
Your return is inevitable (Boomerang effect) 1b
Give (not loan) generously while & as you can 2
“Freely you have received, freely give” (Matthew 10:8)
You don’t know what lies ahead
Principle #2 Live life wisely 3-5
Natural events occur w/o your help; Let GOD be GOD 3
Bloom where you are planted & trust Him!
Be willing to take risks; Life is not perfect 4
There is never the perfect time in life; Life is unpredictable! 5
Ill – My son-in-law asked me for my daughter's hand in marriage. His concern was how much money he needed in the bank before he married her. My answer was, “If you have to wait until you get enough money, you’ll never get married. It’s like having kids, you will never have any if you have to save that much money.”
So it is with life. You’ll never live if you don’t take risks!