Loving God means keeping his commandments, and really, that isn't difficult (1 John 5:3).
The most unhappy people in the world are not the unbelievers, many of whom are ignorantly and blissfully happy in their sin, albeit temporarily.
The most unhappy people in the world are Christians who resist the will of God for their lives! The Christian who refuses to do the will of God must be prepared to pay the price of disobedience. Whatever we sow, we reap, the Bible tells us.
This story was told by a man who resisted the call to ministry in Sweden. He stubbornly resisted God's will, even through the death of his wife and daughter. He went into business and prospered, only to be robbed by his own son. In his older years, he languished with cancer. He said, "I know that I am saved, but, oh, the loss, for I know that I soon will be ushered into His presence only to give an account of a whole life of disobedience.
Did this man really know Christ? I am sobered by the Bible's words, "How can we be sure that we belong to him? By obeying his commandments. If someone says, 'I belong to God,' but doesn't obey God's commandments, that person is a liar and does not live in the truth. But those who obey God's word really do love him. That is the way to know whether or not we live in him. Those who say they live in God should live their lives as Christ did" (1 John 2:3-6, NLT).
Whether he was or not, it has long been my conviction that I have never met a happy disobedient Christian or an unhappy obedient one. It is so true.
R. A. Torrey, a famous educator and evangelist, tells the story of a woman who came to him and said she did not believe in the Bible any more. When he asked her why, she replied, "Because I have tried its promises and found them untrue. The Bible says, 'Whatsoever ye ask believing, ye shall receive.' Well, I fully expected to get things from God in prayer, but I did not receive them, so the promise failed."
Dr. Torrey then turned her to 1 John 3:22: "Whatsoever we ask, we receive of Him, because we keep His commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in His sight." Then he said, "Were you keeping His commandments and doing those things pleasing in His sight?"
She confessed she was not.
Her trouble was not that the Bible's promises were not true; it was her own disobedience. Let that not ever be true of any of us.
Yours for fulfilling the Great Commission each year until our Lord returns,
The late Dr. Bill Bright was Founder and President/Chairman Emeritus of Campus Crusade for Christ, an organization which began as a campus ministry in 1951 and now has more than 27,000 full-time staff and up to 500,000 trained volunteer staff in 196 countries in areas representing 99.6 percent of the world's population. In the past 50 years, Campus Crusade for Christ has seen approximately 6 billion exposures to the gospel worldwide. The film, "JESUS," which Bright conceived and funded through Campus Crusade for Christ, is the most widely translated and viewed film of any type ever produced. Since its use began in 1980, the film has been translated into 839 languages and viewed or listened to by over 5.7 billion people in 228 countries. Dr. Bright was also the author of more than fifty books. Visit campuscrusade.com for more details
Copyright (c) 2003, Bill Bright. All rights reserved. However, readers may copy and distribute this message as desired, without restrictions in number, as long as the content is not altered. Forwarding this e-mail to friends is encouraged. For many evangelistic and spiritual growth materials, visit the Campus Crusade for Christ Web site at ccci.org. See campuscrusade.com for Bill Bright's own materials.