“No servant can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and mammon”
— Luke 16:13

So, today is my birthday. Since it is number 49, I guess that means I have begun my 50th year of life. It’s a little surreal to think about that. I wouldn’t call it disturbing, but there are some disturbing truths that I now understand. At the top of that list is the number of years I spent listening to the voices that do not represent the wisdom and truth of God. I have continually elevated the opinion of others to an unhealthy place.

This is really nothing less than slavery. I have allowed myself to be bound by the desires, demands and whims of others. It’s a self-inflicted handicap that I so regret. It has been a constant battle to live my life to an audience of one. The first 40 years of my life, I played to a much larger group of onlookers.

I recently attended my 30th class reunion and was struck once again by the amount of time, money, effort and energy I spent trying to impress people that I would see twice in 30 years. It’s such an exercise of futility. Life is short, and relationships are fleeting, but eternity is so long and permanent. It’s simply a bad investment to focus on the temporal.

Once you realize this, you are ready to tune out the noise and turn up the direction and affirmation that God wants to give to each of his children. That’s me! A 49-year-old child who is prized and valued by Majesty. Once I began to see it that way, I finally began to truly live. My advice to you: don’t wait so long! It’s truly a waste!