People always ask me: "Why are you such a big fan of Chan's?" Well, if you know me, the answer should be pretty obvious. I'm a very direct person. I don't sugar-coat my opinions and I have very little patience for those that "beat-around-the-bush," so to speak. Life is way too short. That's why I like Chan. He says things that most of us might be thinking, but would never dare say. There seems to be little fear, if any, of what others might think, because he understands the bigger picture. He cuts to the heart of the matter because there is little time to waste. His candor and honesty are refreshing...that's why I like him. I'm going to close out Chapter Two with passages from the end of the book.
"Sadly, many people die while living selfishly. Their funerals are filled by individuals who stretch the truth in order to create a semblance of a meaningful life. Nobody would dare say an unkind word at the funeral; there is an unspoken obligation to come up with something nice to say about the person who dies. But sometimes we secretly think the same thing:
He really wasn't that great of a person." p. 49
Well...how's that for honesty? It's a little harsh...but, I don't doubt that there's some truth in these words. The only problem here; however, is the slippery slope we can often find ourselves on. We shouldn't base the meaning of our lives on what others will say about us when we are dead...because, then it's all about us again and not about God. (I'm starting to feel like a broken record: It's not about me! It's not about me!) But, the truth is that God isn't concerned with the subjective opinions of fickle men (and women). Chan goes on to say:
"When we face the holy God 'nice' isn't what we will be concerned with, and it definitely isn't what He will be thinking about. Any compliments you received on earth will be gone; all that will be left for you is truth." p. 50
So, this leaves me with Chan's final remarks in Chapter 2:
"A friend of mine has a particularly wise perspective on this subject. He was asked if he weren't spending too much of his time serving and giving too much away. His gentle but honest response was, 'I wonder if you'll say that after we're dead.' Friends, we need to stop living selfish lives, forgetful of our God." p.51
I know that thinking about our own demise is rather morbid, but that's what I want you to do. Specifically, think about what might be said about you at your funeral...but remember, it's not about the opinions of men. Will you be remembered as a follower of Christ? Do your ACTIONS bare witness to your faith?
I also want you to think about how you live your life...specifically questioning whether your actions are the result of the expectations of man...or of God. Be honest! The only way we're ever going to change is if we start being honest.
His Faithful Servant~