All the Way Hymn No. 516
The Lord is My Light Hymn No. 515
The purpose of the Christian traveler is to reach the heavenly city gates.
Thought for the day
God's ways are the best, and the only path of safety and happiness is found in obedience to His will.
"Looking unto Jesus" is ever to be our motto. And the assurance is: "I will instruct thee and teach thee in the way which thou shalt go: I will guide thee with mine eye." Psalm 32:8.
"If we surrender our lives to His service, we can never be placed in a position for which God has not made provision." Christ's Object Lessons, p.1 73.
"The Lord designed to bring man into close relationship with Himself and into sympathy and love with his fellow men by placing upon him responsibilities in deeds that would counteract selfishness and strengthen his love for God and man. The plan of system in benevolence God designed for the good of man, who is inclined to be selfish and to close his heart to generous deeds." Testimonies 3, pp. 393, 394.
Objects: Make up two "report cards " one good and one not-so-good.
Don't think of some people as better than others just because they do more. God loves all of us.
1. Some make better grades in school than others. But that doesn't make them better people.
2. Some who make lower grades actually work harder than some to whom school work comes easily.
3. We cannot see inside another person to know how hard it was for him or her to earn a grade or give a gift. Only God can do that.
I want to tell you about our two girls when they were in elementary school years ago. Our older daughter made good grades in school and brought home her report cards with high marks. Our younger daughter earned report cards with low marks. But did their mother and I think that our older daughter was better than our younger daughter?
No, of course not. We love both equally. In fact, we knew more than those report cards could tell. Our older daughter always found school work easy, and didn't work very hard at her studies. But our younger daughter worked very hard, spending far more hours each week reading and writing her homework. Her C's meant more to us than her sister's A's because we knew the hard work that went into them.
Only God can see into our hearts and know just how hard we work, even when others seem more successful. So don't think that some are better than others, just because they are richer, or smarter, or prettier. God loves us all just the way we are.
Going in the Right Direction
Text: John 14:6
1. Going down a one-way street in the wrong direction is a frustrating experience. It happened to me during rush hour in a large southern city. Meeting irritated drivers and trying to turn around added to my misery. For the rest of the time I was in that city, I carefully noted each subsequent turn to see if I was going in the right direction.
2. Jesus talked about the direction of His life. It involved a cross. Yet, He taught the disciples that the cross was the way of life for the world. Thomas was not sure that he knew the right direction, so he asked, "Lord, we know not whither thou goest; and how can we know the way?" John 14:5. Jesus replied, "I am the way, the truth, and the life" v. 6.
3. Going the right direction through your life is important. It is a joyful experience. Let us learn the instructions of how to travel the pilgrimage of life.
B. Take the only way
1. Thomas knew of many other claims to be "the way." There have been many such claims. Philo called his philosophy "the Royal Way." Buddha claimed to be the discoverer of the "right path." Confucius called his teaching "the Way."
2. Jesus' claim goes beyond the philosophies. He says, "I am the way." He does not show or direct us to the right way. Jesus points us in the right direction and goes with us. He walks with us to lead us. He guides us as we travel. He does not tell us about the way. He is the way.
C. Believe the truth
1. If we wish to go in the right direction, we must believe the truth. Many people have told truths. There is an element of truth in the varied philosophies.
2. Jesus said, "I am the truth." This claim goes beyond the idea of a truth. Jesus did not just tell truths; He embodied the truth. Many truths can be conveyed with words only. Anyone can teach truths about love, forgiveness, and humility. But only Jesus embodies these truths.
3. When we open our lives to Jesus Christ, we can live the good life. He is the perfect pattern of what life should be. To be open to Jesus, the Truth, means we are going in the right direction.
D. Live the life
1. Going in the right direction means more than mere existence. Many philosophies offer an existence style, not a real lifestyle. People search desperately for that which will make their days meaningful and worth living.
2. Jesus gives life. He gives more than the breath which animates our bodies. He makes existence worthwhile. He fills life with meaning.
3. When a person encounters Jesus Christ he is introduced to God. Other philosophies offer temporary solutions to life's great riddles. Jesus offers permanent solutions.
You can go in the right direction. On your journey, Jesus is the Way. To know the truth is to encounter Jesus. To experience the life is to have real life.