In football, the "fourth quarter" is it. Time is running out. There are only a few opportunities left.
If you're ahead, there is a feeling of anticipation of the win. Yet, there is also a feeling of holding the line. The defense has to work hard to preserve and expand your lead. There may be just enough time to accomplish it all. Or not.
If you're behind, there is a sense of urgency to pull ahead, to make that play that will turn the tides in your favor. here is still hope...if even against all odds.
It's October!! We're in the "fourth quarter" of 2021. Time is running out. There are only a few weeks left to accomplish all you intended to accomplish in 2021. Can you make it?
What about 2022? It's time to start setting those goals...and what will they be?
In golf, my husband wants to hit 200 yards on his drive before winter sets in. In his yard, he wants his grass to grow before it's too late for this year.
For me, I want to double the size of my garden before our first frost.
Generally during the "fourth quarter", hitting off the 18th tee, running the last lap in a 5K, we still want to accomplish a lot with all we have within us.
And what about us Christian grandparents? Are we not also in the "fourth quarter" of our lives? Is it time to slow down? Or time to speed up? Can we safely coast into our end zone for the win? Can we "enter God's rest" with full assurance of our life well lived. Are we done?
Have we said our best of:
"Please forgive me"
"I forgive you"
"I love you"
Have we reached our full God-given potential?
Are we ready to "graduate"?
Here are the reasons I've learned from my life why most Christians fail to realize their God-given potential:
1. They haven't officially accepted Christ as their savior. Some think they have been Christian all their life. Unfortunately, there is nothing in the Bible that confirms anyone is born Christian. Because of "the fall", we are all born sinners.
2. They haven't repented of their sins and their past. We must be truly sorry for our behaviors, our thoughts, our words. I have learned that the deeper I fall into repentance, the higher my joy.
3. They haven't fully committed/surrendered/submitted their lives to Christ. It's important to say, "God, I will GO wherever you tell me to go, I will DO what you ask me to do, I will SAY whatever you ask me to say, I will BE whomever you designed me to be."
4. They are a fan of Christ, not a follower. To follow Christ is to get up and walk, move, act, trust, obey, surrender fully and love freely with the love of Christ.
5. They don't hear God's voice.
6. They say, "I'll never forgive myself for "xyz". Are they not glorifying their sin when they could easily hand it over to Christ and let Him have the glory for forgiving them?
Unfortunately, they are missing out on the best part of life! (I only know this because this was me before I accepted Christ on February 2, 2000.)
I now believe these five items are the key to successful Christian living.
1. Self-Control (aka self-discipline)
2. Confession (daily)
4. In-Depth Bible Study
5. Having a Mentor and Being a Mentor
As we Christian grandparents enter into the final touchdown, the last sunset, and the joy that is set before us, we raise our hands in praise. Thank you Lord for helping us, teaching us and using us. It's in the fourth quarter that we find ourselves...in complete peace, in your rest and in your arms.