I want to introduce you to our new sermon series I have been preaching at Lakeview Community church. It is a set of messages that belong to a nationwide campaign entitled, “One month to Live – Thirty days to a no-regrets life.” Pastor Kerry and Chris Shook authored this book and messages some ten years ago. The book was on the New York Times best seller for a time. This is the 10th anniversary of the book – and so they have begun the “One month to Live” campaign again – just nationwide. What I personally like about the book is that it reinforces what I have been preaching on the last several months – knowing and living out the vision for which God has made you for – that idea is central to you because that only happens with a life of intentionality, purpose in and through a relationship with Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior.
Fact of the matter is, we’ve each only got so much time. We cannot spend 25 hours in a 24 hour period. We each only have 24 hours. We can’t make it longer or shorter. We’ve only got the time God has allotted each of us.
Shook illustrates this idea in his book by stating, “Perhaps no place echoes with eternity quite like a cemetery.” In looking at tombstones, a person’s entire life is reduced to two dates and a dash. When you think about it, it (their life) is what happened in the dash. It causes us to wonder, “what did he/she live for?” “What here his/her passions?” “What were his/her greatest mistakes or biggest regrets?” Fact of the matter is, you and I don’t really have control over many things in life. We didn’t get to decide when we were born, who our parents are/were, or which time period and what culture we would face. We don’t get to decide on the dates of our gravestones. Only God knows, our time is in His hands. There is one thing however we can decide on, that is…how were going to use our dash.
Pope John Paul the 6th said, “Somebody should tell us, right at the start of our lives that we are dying. Then we might live life to the limit, every minute of every day. Do it I say! Whatever you want to do, do it now! There are only so many tomorrows.”
I want you to be brutally honest with yourselves…You’re time on earth is limited…Shouldn’t you start making the most of it? If you only had one month to live, you would look at everything with a different perspective. What seems important now would become meaningless. You would have total clarity about what matters the most, and you wouldn’t hesitate to be spontaneous and risk your heart. I can guarantee your life would be totally transformed – even now.”
The whole premise of this idea comes from Psalm 90:12 – it is the key passage for this whole idea. It says,
“Teach us to number our days and recognize how few they are; help us to spend them as we should.” (TLB)
Jesus said in the gospel of John chapter 10 – “ I have come that you may have life and have it abundantly.” God designed you for life. He designed you to live without regrets. No matter the stage of life we are in God desires true relationship with you, in you and through you.
There are four principles a person can mark, can measure the ‘vision’ God has for them in their lives and how much they have made it a part of their lives. These principles come from a study done by Shook concerning the life of Jesus as he was headed to the cross.
They are as follows:
- LIVE PASSIONATELY
STOP PLAYING IT SAFE
- LOVE COMPLETELY
STOP GIVING HALF YOUR HEART
- LEARN HUMBLY
- LEAVE BOLDLY
I believe that God has called you too, and modeled for you a life of intentionality and purpose. This challenge set before you is about meeting that challenge – not in yourself – but in relationship to and with Jesus Christ and the power of His Holy Spirit.
Won’t you seek Him – be intentional in your relationship with God – and simply “Live” the abundant life he has promised those who are His.
P.s. The book “One Month to Live – thirty days to a no-regrets life” are available at your favorite local or on line retailers for around $15. I suggest strongly in you picking up a copy. It’ll fill in the blanks from our Sunday messages.