I have never been one to subscribe to magazines yet there is one that for many years I would buy at the local farm supply store. Finally one Fathers Day Suzanne got me a subscription to American Cowboy. It’s not a large magazine but it speaks to me with its grass roots cowboy contributions. Recently the magazine’s editor sent out a question over the social web pages asking, “If you were given the chance right now to leave everything and start again as a cowboy, would you? It gave me pause to think about why I like cowboy’n so much. A few hours after I read this question this verse came across my path.
Romans 8:28 “We know that all things work together for good to them that love God.”
First, this verse gets a lot of abuse and is misquoted often. That’s why I found it quite ironic that it was the first verse I read this morning after reading the quote from the magazine’s editor.
The first word that got my attention was “leave”. To me leaving in this statement implies quitting something else to start something new. I’ve met a lot of people that decided to reinvent themselves. If you have lost a job recently you know what I mean. To get work you had to take what was available and it was probably a field you were not familiar with. How many time have we seen people jump into something they have no idea what they are getting themselves into? Not just a risky venture but drug abuse, living with someone outside of marriage, being dishonest or holding on to hurt. All of this is risky behavior and strains our relationship with God. The “leave” in this question just brought to mind a bit of irrational behavior, not good judgment. (I’m don’t mean to disparage the editor, rather make a point.)
Then the word “chance” makes me think of opportunity without sound counsel. Don’t get me wrong opportunity comes along in many forms and sometimes taking a risk is necessary, however, even businessmen take risk with some degree of knowledge or experience before they begin. We’ve all taken chances. If it involves something “Cowboy” I’m usually there. In my experience as a church planter and evangelist I have taken risks to start new works but in each instance I received advice (not all of it profitable) and counted the cost of what it would take to begin such a venture. And even when people tried to take advantage of me God prevails and is the one who sees the hearts of men and their deeds.
To begin something new because you desire to live a dream may not be the wisest decision you could make. It may be risky to take such steps. If you want to leave behind a life of turmoil and strife for one of victory then I would say come before the Father and ask Him to change you. This action is not risky no matter what your background is. To begin a life of righteousness means leaving behind the habits and haunts that separates us from our heavenly Father. It’s not risky nor is it taking a chance this is the real deal. Your heavenly Father wants to prosper you and brings out the best in you if you will give Him control over all that you do. If you truly love the Lord then your life will reflect it through the way you live each day. You will make decisions based on your desire to please your heavenly Father and the situations you are in will produce the kind of outcome that will exalt Jesus through your actions.
Charles Spurgeon the great evangelist once wrote, “If I should lose all I have, it is better that I should lose than have, if God so wills: the worst calamity is the wisest and the kindest thing that could befall to me if God ordains it.”
So let me rephrase the question my friends. “If you were given the chance right now to leave everything that separates you from God and exchange it for a relationship with Jesus Christ and eternal life, would you?”