Chapter 2 “You Might Not Finish This Chapter..”

Posted: June 28, 2009 by kylejackson10 in CRAZY LOVE

Throughout time there will be somewhere between 45 billion and 125 billion people that have lived on this earth. That is 125,000,000,000 people. Somewhere around 50-60 years from now no one will know you. Everyone you know will be dead. There will be no one on this earth that knew you. They certainly will not care what kind of car you drove, what job you had, what college you attended or what kind of name brand clothes you had. That can be kinda terrifying or reassuring. Maybe a little of both. The fact of the matter whether we like it or not, it is the truth!

On the average day, we live caught up in ourselves. On the average day, we don’t consider God very much. On the average day, we forget that our life is truly a vapor. The truth is that there is nothing average about today. think of all the things that have to function correctly for you to live today. Francis Chan says, ” The majority of us take for granted our kidneys, liver, lungs and other  internal organs that we are dependent upon to continue living. The only people that think about their kidneys are the people whose kidneys do not work correctly.” James 4:13 says,” Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. Kinda harsh? I think it is reality. Frederick Buechner writes, “Intellectually we all know that we will die, but we do not really know it in the sense that the knowledge becomes a part of us. We do not really know it in the sense of living as though it were true. On the contrary, we tend to live our lives as if they will go on forever.” 

Chan says he use to believe that there were two kinds of people in the world: Natural worriers and natural joyful people. He says, “I am a problem solver. I see a problem that needs to be fixed and I fix it. I am a natural worrier because I take God’s word seriously. God can see my intensity in ministry related stuff. Right?” But then there is a complexing command God gives. “Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!” (Phil. 4:4) Notice at the end of that verse it does not say “…unless you are doing something extremely important. NO! It say to rejoice always. It goes on in verse 6 to tell us to “..not be anxious about anything.” “Crazy Love” says that we have come to this idea of because of our work, families and our life that it is OK for us to disobey God because of the magnitude of our responsibilities. That our circumstances, whatever they might be, are more important that rejoicing the life that God has given us.

WORRY: implies that we do not quite trust that God is big enough, powerful enough, or loving enough to take care of what is happening in our lives.

STRESS: Says that things that we are involved in are more important enough to merit our impatience, our lack of grace toward others, or our tight grip of control.

Chan says,”Basically, both worry and stress reek of arrogance.”

Suppose you are an extra in a movie. You will concentrate so much on the scene where there are hundreds of people around and for two fifths of a second you can see the back of your head in this movie. Maybe your mom and your grandmother will get excited about seeing the back of your head for two fifths of a second…Maybe? But no one else will ever realize it is you unless you tell them. And even then most will not care. 

Take it a step further and have all your closest friends over and they all think that this movie is about you. Your two fifths of a second scene occurs and your friends tell you that “you are an idiot! How can you think this movie is about you?” So many Christians are even more delusional than the person that I have been talking about. So many of us think and live as if this movie of “life” is about us. If you go back and look at any powerful Bible story: David and Goliath, Moses and the Israelites, Noah and the Arc and so on… If you look at any of these great stories about God’s power, there is only one word to describe all of these stories, “Obedience.” God picks us to do great things and all he ask us to do is have “obedience.” How is it possible to think this life is about us? Chan says, “I want my two fifths of a second to be about my making much about God. 1 Corinthians 10:31 says, “In all we do, Do it for the glory of God.” So how do we do  this? Chan says we need to “get over ourselves.” The point of our lives is to point to him. Whatever we are doing, God wants to be glorified. Because this whole thing is his. It is his movie, his World, his gift.

Are you ready to live life this way? To acknowledge God in all we do. Matthew 10:32 says, “Whoever acknowledges me before men, I will also acknowledge them before my father in heaven. But whoever disowns me before men, I will disown him before my father in heaven.” Chan tells a story of a business man that was well known throughout his community. He was giving a speech and in the middle of it he decided to share the gospel. This was unplanned. At the end he told the people there “you never know when God is going to take your life, at that moment there is nothing you can do about it. Are you ready?” Ten seconds later he fell over and had a massive heart attack and died. Chan went to visit the family and the eldest son approached him and said, “Did you hear the story, did you hear? I am so proud of my dad. He died doing what he loved the most. He was telling people about Jesus!” Can you imagine what it must have felt like for this business man? One moment he is standing telling a bunch of random people, unplanned the story of Jesus and the next moment he is standing in heaven having Jesus tell God who he was. “Whoever acknowledges me before me, I will acknowledge them before my father in heaven…”

All that matter in this reality of life is who we are before God. We need to stop living selfish lives forgetful of God. Our lives can be unexpectedly short. Remember that this movie you are in is not about you!

Again, all of this is pulled from highlighted phrases in the book. The chapter talks about so much more, but these are some things that caught my eye. I am the worlds worst at wondering what people think of me. I tend to lead, but I lead in the moment of wherever I am and whoever I am with. I lead, but in a selfish way. Only in a way that will be acceptable for the crowd I am with. This is something I struggle so much with. 

My pastor just finished a series titled “Overloaded” (Living an overloaded lifestyle). He talked about the stress and the worry that we bring among ourself. Making sure that we are “keeping up with the Jones’s.” Making sure our kid’s are “well-rounded” and involved with everything they can be. We run ourself in the ground and then use our “life” as an excuse for our 1/2 hearted relationship with God. (at least that is what I took form it) But it is so true. We live in a culture where we are so worried about what we wear that we take on an extra job for “shopping money.” Who cares!! We can not give extra money to the church or people in need because we spend all our money on selfish things we want. Everyone’s phone works…you don’t have to go buy the new I-Phone, but we do! And then we use excuses on why we do not have money to give the church or time to spend with God. The movie has become about us! I challenge you this week to do something for someone you do not know that well. Something unselfish and not for you. Again I struggle with all of this. But I am trying to not only hear what God is saying but I am trying to apply it to my life. I feel that is what God tells us to do!

Have a great week!  -Kyle

  1. Sam says:

    Hey man!
    These are great. I got your facebook message a few weeks ago talking about this book, and right when it was sent to my phone, I was looking at the back of the book. They had it for sale at a table at youth camp. It looked so good, but I didnt have the money to buy it. Keep writing, I love some of the quotes your using. You have great knowledge and wisdom. Even those some of the quotes are from the book, its easily seen that you actually get what your reading, and this is so important. I love Francis Chan, he is such an awesome guy. I will keep looking back and continuing to read. See ya man!

  2. Rob says:

    I love to camp out. My most recent camp out involved me going to Pursell Farms in Sylacauga, AL. One top of the mountain at Pursell Farm, you can see fog as it sits on top of the ponds and the Coosa River below. It is amazing watching a sunrise in the east. The colors are simply amazing. I tend to think that God paints the skies as the sun comes up. As I sat there on top of the mountain amazed at the beauty of nature and how it glorified God, the fog started to lift. In a matter of time, the fog had completely lifted, and nature came alive. So our life is like that fog. We are here for a short time and then gone. Like Francis Chan talks about, in 60-70 years from now, when we have passed away, our legacy that we strive so hard to set in place, and the traditions that we uphold will not matter. In fact, they will be forgotten. People will forget you. James writes in his book “Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes.” ~ James 4:14. So that being said, we need to live our lives in such a way that we glorify the Creator. If we don’t live to glorify God, our life here on earth is wasted. Both John Piper and A.W. Tozer write about wasted lives. We see in the book “Crazy Love” what Tozer says “A man by his sin may waste himself, which is to waste that which on earth is most like God” Genesis 1:26 states that “Then God said ‘Let us make man in our own image, according to our likeness;”…it goes in verse 27 to say “God created man in His own image, in the image of God, He created him; male and female, He created them.” You see because man was created in God’s image, man was created to glorify God. When man sinned, it brought shame to man and disappointed God. Tozer goes on in the book to say “This i man’s greatest tragedy and God’s heaviest grief.” It’s God’s heaviest grief because God had to send His son to die a slow, pain, death, a death worthy of criminals, so that man could be made right with God. Piper writes in his book “Don’t Waste Your Life”, “everything that you enjoy in Christ-as a Christian, as a person who trust Christ-is owing to the death of Christ. And all your rejoicing should be in the cross where all your blessings were purchased for you at the cost of the death of the Son of God, Jesus Christ”. This is why Christians, who are filled with Christ, are always so excited to share their faith and what God has done in their lives. This is why Kyle is writing this blog. He wants others to see Christ glorified through him. As a potter molds the clay to bring the potter glory, so too God molds us and shapes us to bring Him glory. As a Christian, I sometimes forget to be joyful in all things, both good and bad. My friends this is not the way it should be. We should be joyful in all things, proclaiming the name of Christ in all situations. Let us take the challenge that Chan was talking about and stop being selfish, but boast in the name of Christ.

    Press on my brothers


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