Categories
importance special Uncategorized value

Do You Feel Plutoed?

Neal Pollard

Poor Pluto. First it’s a planet and then it’s not anymore. It has become the Rodney Dangerfield of our solar system. In an award-winning move that probably did not make the “sub planet” feel better, “plutoed” was selected as the Word of the Year by the American Dialect Society in Anaheim, California, a little over a decade ago. The word means “to demote or devalue someone or something.”

Do you ever feel “plutoed”? Do you feel like people don’t appreciate you like they should? You may get that feeling on the job, when you’re working harder than anyone else and somebody else gets the credit, the promotion, and the attention. You may get that feeling in your marriage or in the home, whether you’re the husband, wife, parents, or children. You may even sometimes feel “plutoed” by the church. Maybe you feel that your difficulties or problems are being ignored. You might think your contributions or ideas are not taken seriously enough. I’m sure elders, deacons, preachers, Bible class teachers, their spouses, along with everyone else, has to deal with that “plutoed” feeling periodically.

Will you remember a few things? First, remember the value God placed on your soul by sending Jesus to die to save it (Gal. 2:20; Eph. 1:7). Second, remember that God’s system of rewarding is on His time and His terms, but He will not let faithful service go unnoticed or unblessed (Mat. 6:4,6,16; 1 Tim. 5:25). Third, remember that you are valuable because of who you are, a child of God (1 Pet. 2:5,9; Rev. 1:5-6). Finally, remember to focus on helping everyone around you feel valued. It’s the way you want to be treated (Lk. 6:31). It’s the right and Christ-like way to acts (Acts 10:38). And, there may be somebody out there sorely in need of being “de-plutoed.” Think about it! Appreciate the value you and others have because of the God who made it all and owns it all.

0000

Categories
eternal life eternity Judgment Judgment Day soul Uncategorized

EVERY NAME IMPORTANT

Neal Pollard

Today marks 16 years since the most infamous and iconic attack rocked our collective consciousness. Each year, there is a solemn ceremony conceived in such wisdom and executed with a poignancy that never abates. That is the reading of the names of those who died in the 911 Attacks in New York, Pennsylvania, and Washington, D.C. The soft music playing behind the readers accents the mood, punctuated by every reader mentioning the name of a family member they lost that fateful day. September 11th resonates with us so deeply because it was an attack on our country, but also because of the death of each and every individual who perished that day. Behind each name are family members, memories, joy and sorrow. Each person, in such a dramatic, untimely way, was taken from time into eternity. God loved and loves each one with an infinite, eternal love and wanted each one to be saved. Christ gave His life to provide salvation for each one. The Bible was written for the benefit of each one. The Lord’s church was meant to pursue and teach each one.

Though each individual is numbered among such a large group, around 3,000 of them, each one means more than the whole world (Mat. 16:26). This touching memorial is a tribute to the overall value of human life. It reminds us that we are surrounded by individuals all possessing an eternal soul.  Everyone you see today is heading toward eternity. Each one will either hear “well done” or “depart from me” (cf. Mat. 25:31ff). What is said about God’s attitude toward those victims specially remembered today is true of every person we meet and see today.

May we have our hearts stirred by the sobriety of that truth. May we never lose sight of our urgent responsibility to share the message of Christ with the people in our lives. As moving as the ceremony that occurs each year in New York City on September 11th, we really cannot imagine what the Day of Judgment will be like. Each person who ever lived, including you and me, will hear our name called (cf. 2 Cor. 5:10). As important as our own name is, every name is important. Let us pray that this realization will propel us to tell the best news of human history and help someone find the only way, truth, and life.

26687246253_33721e4ba2_b

Categories
choice destiny eternity soul Uncategorized

What Is Your Trajectory?

Neal Pollard

The New Oxford Online Dictionary defines trajectory as “the path followed by a projectile flying or an object moving under the action of given forces” (n/p). The term is used of everything from ammunition to astronomy, but in its figurative sense can be used to speak of the law of sowing and reaping or cause and effect.  There appears to be three elements to this definition: the path, the object, and the action of given forces. Apply this to a person’s life and the discussion becomes eternally serious.

  • The path: Jesus teaches that there are really only two paths to take, “the broad way” and “the narrow way” (Mat. 7:13-14).  Some have given no thought as to which road they are taking. Others convince themselves they are on the narrow way when an honest, objective look reveals it to be the other way. Some change roads, for good or bad. However, we cannot successfully argue that we are not on a path leading somewhere, whether the destination is “destruction” or “life.”
  • The object: Friend, the object (projectile) in this path of trajectory is the individual. It is you and me. We are moving closer to eternity every day and to some eternal destination. God created a never-dying soul within us (Mat. 25:46; Ec. 12:7). As it was with the rich man and Lazarus (Lk. 16:19-31), we will lift up our eyes in either Abraham’s bosom or in torment. That soul was precious enough to God to pay the highest price to ransom it (John 3:16), but we may choose to give it away by allowing the trajectory of our life to miss the intended target (cf. Mat. 16:26).
  • The action of given forces: We are not helpless regarding this, but force implies pressure, resistance, and influence. The decisions we make, the people we allow to have prominence, our choices, what we prioritize, and what values we establish become the forces moving us to the destination. It’s not what we say is important, what we know is right, or what we intend to do. It is seen in our attitudes, words, and actions.

The earlier we figure this out, the sooner we will make it our aim to do everything we can to head in the only right direction. We can change paths, but the longer we are aimed the wrong target the harder we make it on ourselves to change course. This is true with finance, physical health, occupation, marriage and family, but nowhere are the stakes as high than as concerns our eternal destiny. Let’s give thought to the trajectory of our lives and be sure that where we are heading is where we really want to go.

2000px-parabolic_trajectory-svg