Life's Fork In The Road
By David J. Stewart
Luke 23:39-42, “And one of the malefactors which were hanged railed on him, saying, If thou be Christ, save thyself and us. But the other answering rebuked him, saying, Dost not thou fear God, seeing thou art in the same condemnation? And we indeed justly; for we receive the due reward of our deeds: but this man hath done nothing amiss. And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom.”
I heard a practical sermon today by Dr. Jack Hyles called Life's Fork In The Road. I wrote the following article after listening to the sermon. This truth applies to everybody, because we all face life's burdens, hardships, afflictions and heartaches.
There is a wonderful and practical truth presented in Luke 23:39-42. Two criminals were being crucified along with the Lord—the innocent Lamb of God. One man turned to the Lord and said, “If you're really the Christ, then save yourself and us!” The other man rebuked the first man and said, “Don't you fear God? We deserve the punishment that we are receiving, but this man hath done nothing wrong.” And then the second man asked Jesus to remember him in eternity. Amen!
Here we witness two extremes to the same situation. In the face of imminent death, one man took the high-road and turned to Jesus Christ for salvation; whereas the other man was critical of the Lord, focused on his misery and took the low-road. One man went to Heaven; the other went to Hell. One man chose to use his calamity for good; the other for bad. One man said “I Will”; the other said “I Won't.”
Adversity never leaves you the same. The heartache that makes one better makes another bitter. The same sun that melts the wax hardens the clay. The burden that makes one the victor makes the other a victim. Every adversity is an opportunity. Every heartache is a crossroad. Every sorrow will either make you or break you. What are you going to do with the crisis that you're facing right now? Are you going to get on top of the load, or buckle under the load?
If you've never been in a crisis, one is on the way! No one is exempt from the heartaches and sorrows of life. As a general rule, the older people get in life the more they tend to become either more joyful or more bitter. No one stays the same. We're all going somewhere. An obstacle for one is a crown to another. The same marriage commitment that to some means “for better for worse,” to others means “for bitter or curse.” Only you can turn your burdens into a blessing or a curse. God gives us all a choice, a freewill. Anyone can turn their lemons into lemonade with God's help.
Oh, listen my friend, don't let your hardships and burdens destroy you! Let the Lord help you turn your burdens, heartaches, sorrows and hardships into stepping-stones instead of stumbling stones. Build upon your problems instead of crumbling beneath them. How 'bout you? Turn your heartbreak into a heartmake! Look your obstacles and adversities in the face and say, “I'm choosing the right fork in the road.”
“In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ.”
—2nd Thessalonians 1:8
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