Devotion

The Test of Time

by Greg Laurie on Sep 24, 2015
You were running the race so well. Who has held you back from following the truth?

One thing I have found in life is that it’s full of surprises. I have been greatly surprised by the way people’s lives have turned out. I think of people I went to school with who seemingly had no potential whatsoever, and they have clearly proven otherwise. Then there are those who seemed to have so much promise, but when I look at the trajectory their lives took, it is another story altogether.

I have been a pastor for more than four decades now, and I have seen a lot of people come and go through the years. I’ve seen some individuals who were gifted as musicians, preachers, or in some other way effectively crash and burn. I have also seen some who I thought would go out and change the world basically self-destruct instead.

As time goes by, I find myself being less impressed with things I was once more impressed by and more impressed with things I was once less impressed by. Nowadays, I am far more impressed by character than charisma. I am more interested in personal integrity than in mere talent. (Will this person stand the test of time?) I am impressed not by a person who has a huge ministry, but by someone who is still married to the same person they started out with. That impresses me, because so many things change as time goes by.

If God has gifted you, then you need to take that gift and use it for His glory. You not only want to start this race well, but you also want to finish it well. You can hold on to first place in a race for a while, but if, at the end, you break the rules or don’t cross the finish line, it doesn’t count. Finish well.

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