When I was 16 years old, I had my dad drop me off at a lake to go fishing on his way to a church board meeting. This 30-acre private lake sat about a half of a mile off the road.
During this particular evening, the fish were biting one after the other and I was having one of those rare occasions. The problem started when I heard thunder in the distance but I kept telling myself that I would leave after just one more catch.
All of a sudden, I looked up, the black clouds were rolling in over my head and the storm was upon me. I grabbed the stringer of fish, my tackle box and my pole and ran as fast as I could, seeing where I was going by the continuous flashes of lightning. I was so scared that I prayed for God to spare my life.
When my dad saw how bad the storm was, he left the meeting and came to find me in the woods. When I heard him yelling for me and saw the big flashlight, my fears were relieved and I ran toward him. We made it to the car safely and went home to dry off.
When I was running for my life, my stringer of fish got caught on some tree limbs but I had to leave them behind. Also, my tackle box fell open and I didn’t bother picking up what had fallen out.
There were more important things to worry about and that was my life. In those woods, I had to decide what things mattered most.
People every day make choices of what matters most in their lives. This reminds me of a popular 1970s musical artist, John Davidson. He escaped from a burning building just to go back in for his music, and he never got back out. He chose his music over his life.
The Bible says there will be some who choose material possessions and things over eternal things. Jesus asked a couple of questions concerning this issue when he said, “What good will it be for a man if he gains the whole world, yet forfeits his soul? Or what can a man give in exchange for his soul?”
For those who choose to follow Christ, heaven awaits. But for those who choose to reject Christ, eternal damnation and separation from God awaits.
The good news is we get to choose, and my prayer for you is that you choose those things that matter most.