What really matters?

From the time of my youth, I wanted two things: a nice truck and a nice boat. We bought an all-wheel drive Honda Pilot with the intention of buying a small boat. The Pilot was a nice vehicle, but after we decided to buy a tri-toon I knew we needed a truck. The tri-toon was much heavier than the towing capacity of the Pilot. So, we bought a brand new Z71 in 2020. Our Chevrolet was the first new truck I had ever purchased. One Sunday, not long after we bought our new truck, we were about 2 miles from home and a hard, green pinecone fell out of a tree and hit the hood. As soon as it hit the hood, I knew it put a dent in it. I was right, when we got home, I looked and found a small dent on the front of my hood. The truck that I had waited my entire life for had a dent in it after owning it for a few months.

Similarly, I had wanted a boat forever! We purchased our tri-toon, but because of Cov id, we had to wait almost a year before it arrived. The dealer told me I needed to spend several hours breaking-in the engine. The second time I took my new boat out I hit something under the water so hard that the engine kicked up and ruined my back railing and destroyed the cowling.

I distinctly remember the feeling after both incidences. Completely by God’s grace, I also distinctly remember my re-sponse. After denting my truck, I said something to my family like, “I don’t want my life ruined or ruled by stuff.” After tearing up my new boat, I said something like this to Clinton and a couple of his friends that were with us, “I’m glad none of you were hurt” and “that’s why I have insurance.”

Trust me, there have been many, many times when I have not honored God with my response to stressors and aggra-vations of life. As I have grown older, and hopefully matured in my walk with Christ, however, I have learned that very few things in life really matter. I do not say that from a cynical or bitter point of view; I say that from an eternal point of view.

Solomon put it best after he had made a careful investigation of the things that really mattered in life: “13 When all has been heard, the conclusion of the matter is: fear God and keep His commands, because this is for all humani-ty. 14 For God will bring every act to judgment, including every hidden thing, whether good or evil (Ecclesiastes 12:13-14).”

As we live, may we remember that loving, trusting, following, and serving the Lord is what really matters. Likewise, may we spend the one life we will ever have to live pouring our faith into our family and into those God allows us to influence. When we stand before God, He will not care that we kept our truck and boat free from dents. Further-more, we will find no comfort in our dent-free vehicles either when we are in the presence of God.

I want my life to count for eternity. Therefore, despite all my weaknesses and failures, I strive to live in accordance with the Apostle Paul’s words in Philippians 3:13-14, “13 Brothers, I do not consider myself to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and reaching forward to what is ahead, 14 I pursue as my goal the prize promised by God’s heavenly call in Christ Jesus.” May the desire of your heart be to press on in service to and love for Jesus as well; because that is what really matters!
-Pastor Clint Miller