OCTOBER 26

Full Steam Ahead

Commit your works to the LORD and your plans will be established. PROVERBS 16:3

When young William Borden—heir to the Borden dairy fortune—graduated from high school more than 100 years ago, his father gave him three things for his graduation gift: enough money for a trip around the world, a servant to accompany him and a brand-new Bible. So at just 16 years of age, William traveled throughout Africa, Asia and the Middle East, experiencing a mix of cultures and people.

But the combination of seeing human suffering while simultaneously acquainting himself with the Scriptures caused William's heart to be stirred with a calling from God. He committed his life to prepare for the mission field, and he wrote two words in the back of his Bible: "No reserve."

Returning home, he enrolled at Yale University, where his spiritual devotion and his ministry to the poor and destitute became well known among the students, faculty and community in New Haven. And though he was courted by both Wall Street and the family business upon graduation, he stayed firm in his desire to serve God overseas. During this time he wrote two additional words in the back of his Bible: "No retreat."

While traveling through Egypt on his way to a mission in China, William contracted a form of spinal meningitis. Within a month, he died. He was only 25. Weeks later, as his father was going through William's things, he came across the Bible he had given his son as a high-school graduation present. The list of short handwritten statements in the back now included a third: "No regrets."

No reserve. No retreat. No regrets. Those six words should challenge all of us to be radical followers of Christ. We should live purposefully in our marriages and families, investing ourselves wholeheartedly in the primary people God has given us to love and to lead. Always forward. Always faithful. No going back.

DISCUSS

What areas of your life and marriage are crying out for these words (and actions) of resolve right now?

PRAY

Pray that you will both be radical followers of Christ, who don't hold back, don't go back and don't look back with any regrets. 

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