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What is the greatest good?"
January 17, 2017
January 17, 2017 Issue #130
Seek the greatest good and everything else will fall into placeJanuary is a fitting time to talk about the direction of your life. I have high standards for you, the readers of Inspire-O-Gram.
I believe you're way above average in intelligence. I believe you want to be authentic persons, not phonies. I also believe you're very suspicious about the shallowness of the world around you.
With that in mind, we're going to look at the Big Picture, a purpose for your life that provides meaning and joy, a purpose especially relevant to single people. Even though I've made many mistakes, this is one thing I got right. I'll lay it out for you the best I can and let you decide for yourself.
It started for me In high school, where I got a very brief introduction to the Greek philosophers. I was too immature at the time to appreciate them, but in college courses, I realized they were talking about the most important questions of life. One of the subjects they explored was "the greatest good."
Many things are good. Marriage is good. Family is good. A career is good. A comfortable home and reliable car can be good too. But of all the "goods" we can aspire to, which is the most important? Which "good" is the greatest?
It wasn't until I was a senior in college that I began reading the Bible regularly. As I was getting ready to graduate, get a career and go out into the world, I was confronted with a choice: What is the greatest good?
Forty-three years ago I made my choice and I have never regretted it. Here are my thoughts on what I believe to be the greatest good.
Walk the narrow wayTemptation is like quicksand,
it quickly pulls you in.
and soon you're sinking deeper
in the swamp that's known as sin.
How did you end up in this place?
You must walk the narrow way,
You can't keep changing back and forth
So pick the road that takes you home,
You must walk the narrow way,
~ Jack Zavada, 2017 ~
Haddon Robinson has January's QOTMJanuary's Quote of the Month comes from Haddon Robinson, from his book What Jesus Said About Successful Living. Robinson served for decades as lead teacher on the radio program, "Discover the Word," and is an author and preacher:
~ Haddon Robinson (1931 - ) ~
Robinson is referring here to Matthew 7:13-14: “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it."
Most people walk the broad road, the way of the world that values prestige, possessions, and power. It's easy. It can even be fun. But where does it lead? Ultimately, its destination is emptiness.
Followers of Jesus
Christ take the narrow road. Why? Because it ends in fulfillment in heaven, an eternity with the all-loving God. Where is YOUR personal road taking you?
A good resolution: Be less lonely this yearWant to do something about your loneliness in 2017?
Why not try the strategies I've used all my life? I lay them out in clear, easy-to-follow steps in Outsmarting Loneliness.
This PDF ebook is real world stuff, fellow singletons, taken from my own 40 years of experience in the single life, and using the proven technique of cognitive therapy.
Cognitive therapy, if you're not familiar with it, is the proven science of using your intelligence to outsmart your emotions, and Outsmarting Loneliness shows you how to do it in ways that work.
You're old enough to know you can't believe every thought that comes into your head. This ebook--which comes with a money back guarantee, by the way--shows you how to recognize destructive thoughts and neutralize them before they get out of control. And, it's only $7.97.
Make this year better than the past. Check out the contents of Outsmarting Loneliness.
Will I be single the rest of my life?John Piper is one of my favorite preachers, a man of integrity and wisdom. He is the founder of www.desiringGod.org and is chancellor of Bethlehem College and Seminary in Minnesota. He is the author of 50 books.
Recently I ran across this question and answer by John. I thought it would be of great interest to readers of Inspire-O-Gram.
Take a few minutes to read John's answer to Ashley, when she asks, Will I be single for the rest of my life?
Christian, not Christian. Open mind, closed mind.Every month when I write a new Inspire-O-Gram, I'm faced with a dilemma. I know many of you follow other faiths than Christianity. Some of you follow no religion at all.
When I talk about Jesus Christ, you Christians get it. I am, however, "preaching to the choir." You're already convinced. The rest of you are either ambivalent or, as with the great majority of subscribers, rarely open this email.
In the end, I am guided by my promise to always tell you the truth. I have to tell you, to the best of my ability, what has worked for me and what has not worked for me. I realize everything I write will not be relevant to your own life, but I try to make this newsletter as pertinent to single people as I can.
So that's what I'm going to keep doing. My hope is that Christians will be strengthened in their faith and that those of you who follow no religion will stay open-minded to Jesus Christ. Christianity can be a difficult life, but it is also enormously fulfilling.
I always encourage your feedback. Your comments go directly to my inbox, since this is a one-person operation. You can use our secure contact form or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
February has that holiday many singles dread, Valentine's Day. I've written much about it in the past, and for those of you who are newbies, I'll try to link to some of those articles in our next issue.
As you make your way through the world, day by day, never doubt that God is real and that he loves you. Living in his love is the greatest good.
Until next month,
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