“For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul?” Matthew 16:26
“Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it” Matthew 7:13-14
We face many challenges in life where we must choose between following Christian Lessons or gaining wealth at the expense of our Christian values. We make choices that affect our standard of living as well as other people every day. What is the benefit to you, if you have every material thing you wish but lose your soul?
I learned that we must do more than make the Christian choices; we must make Christian choices for the right reasons. I learned that if I decide to do something that follows Christian beliefs, but my purpose is to make myself look good, I will fail to live up to Christian values. You can not earn your way to a saved soul, but you can accept being saved and work to live up to Christian values and do what you can to help others.
I faced many challenges in my life where I had to decide between making a decision that would benefit me or doing the right thing. I did not always make the correct choice. As I grew up, I made some choices that helped me look better at the expense of other people. I felt terrible for those people I harmed, but I would repeat the mistake.
It was not until my junior year in high school when I was facing a challenge that I thought would destroy all my dreams, that I began to make decisions based on how other people would be affected. Going to Church taught me this lesson, but I never applied it. It took thinking I was going to lose all my dreams for me to pray openly for help. The answer was definite. I am to work to help everyone, not work to advance me personally. In my case, the actual message from the prayer was to play for the team, not myself. Earning a football scholarship was very important to me at the time, and I thought that opportunity was lost if I had to move with only my senior year left. After moving, I played football as instructed in the message, playing for the team, not myself. I did earn a scholarship, and I applied that lesson to all parts of my life.
I did not relate the message of playing for the team to the Christian Lessons from Church until I was over thirty years old. I learned the lessons but did not apply them. We must study the Christian Lessons and think about how they apply to our situation. After living my life to this point, I can see that Christian Lessons teach us how God wants us to live, but our experience here on earth is dramatically improved. All the money in the world can not give us the satisfaction we receive when helping others.
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