A PRECAUTIOUS LIFE TO LIVE
By Pastor Marlon Almonte
“Be very careful, then, how you live —not as unwise but as wise, 16 making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil.
17 Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lords will is.”
If you were given another chance to live again, what would you do to make your life better than your life now? You probably answer to correct all the mistakes you have done in the past with regards to your health, career, or spiritual life. But the reality is we cannot able to go back in the past to correct the mistakes we have done because we have only one life to live. Our life cannot rewind or even fast-forward. Even the book of Hebrews agrees that there is only one death per lifetime and there will be accountability of all we have done in this world. Hebrew 9:27 “Just as people are destined to die once, and after that to face judgment.
If we have only one life to live then how do we plan to spend the rest of our remaining time on earth? Since our time is limited that we cannot rewind our life, and we will give an account to the one who created us, therefore, our life should best spend in accordance to his will and purpose. Paul advice the Ephesian believers to live a life not as foolish but as wise, a people who doesn’t make an impulsive decision but who’s life is navigated by the word of God.
What are the steps we need to make to live in accordance to his purpose?
1. We must walk in this life with GOD PRECISELY. V.15 “Be very careful, then, how you live —not as unwise but as wise.” That means there is accuracy and consistency in our walk as a believers, like a clock, which not run late or advance, nothing less nothing more. When Paul says, “Be very careful, then, how you live —not as unwise but as wise.” We can understand in this way, “ A wise person takes a necessary precaution before he/she take a step.” Paul advice the believers to be cautious for the potential dangers that they might step in this world and affect in their spiritual life, in other words…
o We should be aware of the spiritual dangers increases every day. We are updated of what is going on in our world. Certainly, all times are evil because the world is under the dominion of the evil prince of darkness (Eph. 2:2 “the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient”). But it seems that some times or places are more evil than others and t’s hard to find movies or even TV shows that are not filled with filth and profanity. Nowadays we heard and see in the news featuring a celebration of homosexuality as if it were normal and wonderful.
o We should not be influence by the world’s morals and values system.
When you’re around a bad odor for a while, your nose adjusts and it no longer smells so bad. When you’re in an evil day, if you aren’t careful, after a while you don’t even notice how rotten things have become. After a while, even Christians absorb the world’s values. Paul calls such behavior unwise and foolish.
o We should ignore the world’s offer for temporal fulfillment and pleasure.
The fools define in Proverbs live for immediate gratification according to their feelings, impulses, and desires. Fools don’t think about storing up treasures in heaven. They are focused completely on the here and now. In short, they do not understand the will of the Lord.
Charles Stanley said in his sermon “Whenever Christians compromise their godly principles, they walk dangerously close to a deadly landmine.”
The Bible warns us about these and many other dangers that can sabotage our walking wisely with the Lord. To walk precisely, we must avoid the spiritual dangers of this evil day.
2. We must walk in this life with GOD PROACTIVELY. V.16 “Making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil.
It means, people who are taking an initiative to make things happen, we take every opportunity that God open for us, opportunity to grow in our faith and understand his will, opportunity to discover and develop our talents, opportunity to minister to one another, and opportunity to serve the Lord before all the opportunities will gone and we waste our time doing other things.
Our time is limited and our life is short and cannot be rewind, all the opportunities we miss today will not come back tomorrow. All the things we have done today will determine what your life would be in the future. (Galatians 6:7-10 “ Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows. 8 Whoever sows to please their flesh, from the flesh will reap destruction; whoever sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life. 9 Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. 10 Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.)
Aesop told his famous fable of the grasshopper and the ant. While the grasshopper was obliviously enjoying the freedom of warm weather, the ant was storing up food for the cold winter. When the weather changed, the grasshopper starved to death, while the ant easily survived through the winter. So much of the Christian life is “acting in anticipation” of the future.
So what kind of people are we? A PASSIVE who watch things happen, or a REACTIVE who wonder what happen, or a PROACTIVE who make things happen?
3. We must walk in this life, which GOD is our PRIORITY. V.17 “Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lords will is.”
A “priority” is something that has first importance in our life. It’s those things that we place higher value on than other things. So if obeying God is our highest priority, then we don’t think that every moment that we spend for him is boring and waste of time? If obeying God is the thing we regard as higher value, then we don’t mind to sacrifice our time, talents or even treasure that God gave to us on the first place?
We will not understand his will if we don’t put God first in our life, the book of Proverbs talks a lot about the contrast living of wise and foolish. The foolish suffer all the consequences of his action because he chooses the wrong pathway of life on the other hand, the wise experience satisfactions in life because he chooses to live in God’s principles.
How often do we see people who don’t spend time in prayer until God forces them into a corner where they finally realize that their only hope lies in prayer unto God? How often do we see people spend time in listening and studying the word of God until they finally realize that the answer in every confusion lies in the word of God? How often do people take for granted the things of God, until the day comes when all the things they have taken for granted are no longer available?
Tom Landry, former coach of the Dallas cowboys said, “The thrill of knowing Jesus is the greatest thing that ever happened to me … I think God has put me in a very special place, and He expects me to use it to His glory in everything I do … whether coaching football or talking to the press, I’m always a Christian … Christ is first, family second and football third.”
Matthew 6:33 “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” The true satisfaction or happiness in life is putting God first in our life and the rest will be under his control.
Dr. Joseph M. Stowell, in his book, Following Christ, (page 154) asks the question:
HOW DO PEOPLE GO SO FAR ASTRAY SPIRITUALLY?
The question was prompted when Dr. Stowell read an article given to him from the local paper the about Tom Wilson who died, gunned down as a member of a Neo-Nazi gang.
Tom had grown up in the church he of which he was now the Pastor
• Active in the youth group
• Professed Christ as Savior and was Baptized
• He was “A very good student and won many points for faithful memory work, lesson completion, and attendance” according to his fourth-grade Sunday School Teacher.
How did he fall so far?
That first step was, more probably;
o A choice to not listen to the voice of the Spirit.
o To love his lusts more than Christ.
o To choose a friend who encouraged his stepping off the path.
This sad story of a life inflicting incredible damage on the Name of Christ was played out, not by momentary, cataclysmic departure, but by the gradual erosion of a commitment to be a fully devoted follower of Christ.”
So how do we spend our life in this world?