Life, like traffic on a city beltway, runs on and on. For a few hours each night, it slows. But most of the time it goes ahead full tilt. Some people get in the wrong lane and go where they don’t want to go. Others are totally lost. Accidents are frequent. Hectic is normal.
But life is really unlike traffic on a city beltway. When cars crash, they may be trashed and replaced. But life is made up of PEOPLE, like you. You have only one life. It cannot be replaced or recycled.
Some people travel through life recklessly. They ignore warnings, shrug off guidelines, and scoff at danger. They put the pedal to the floorboard and blindly race to their own destruction.
God cares about you and your life. He has given STOP signs in the Bible for your safety. You may ignore them if you wish. But if you run God’s STOP signs, you will someday crash. It won’t be your car. It will be your life.
1. STOP. Choose your friends wisely.
The Bible says evil companions corrupt good morals (1 Corinthians 15:33). Bad company will crowd you into the wrong lane — force you into doing things you never intended to do.
God’s Word tells us to choose friends who help us do right.
2. STOP. Consider the consequences of your choices.
“Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting” (Galatians 6:7, 8).
Those who do drugs may think, “It’s my choice. If I want to swallow pills or push needles, what does it matter?”
The truth is, it does matter. The choices you make today determine the kind of person you will be tomorrow. The kind of person you are will determine where you will spend eternity.
Look ahead. Where will you end up if you continue going the direction you are going now?
3. STOP. Keep yourself pure.
Many are running this stop sign. They scoff at the idea. “If two people love each other and nobody gets hurt, why not have sex?”
Let me give you several good reasons. First, because God requires purity (1 Timothy 5:22). Second, sexually transmitted diseases are virtually nonexistent in those who have only one partner for life. Third, one-third of teenage pregnancies end in abortion—the pain, the guilt, the killing of unborn babies is avoided by those who live morally pure lives. Fourth, sex outside of marriage results in more unfaithfulness in marriage— numerous studies show this.
It may be difficult to stop at God’s stop sign against moral impurity, but it is right. And it is rewarding.
4. STOP. Honor authority.
You may have wise parents or foolish parents, concerned parents or neglectful parents. You may not even know who your real parents are. But God’s Word says, “Honour thy father and thy mother” (Exodus 20:12).
God also says we are to honor civil rulers and officers of law. Above all, we are to honor God Himself, the sovereign authority. Not all people in authority are wise or good or hon¬orable. Some are corrupt. But if we take their faults to justify our breaking the law, we are no better than they. It is right to honor authority, obey the law, tell the truth, and live straight.
Disobedience to authority brings chaos.
5. STOP. Accept personal responsibility for your life.
Don’t make excuses. Don’t blame others. The Bible says when we accuse others to ex¬cuse ourselves, we actually are condemning ourselves (Romans 2:1). Pointing the finger at everybody else is a deadly habit. It sours your attitude. It makes you lazy and irresponsible. And it gets you nowhere.
Take responsibility. Make wise choices. There will be disappointments. Some people will do you wrong. You can sit and fume about them and loudly claim you are not responsible, or you can choose to go on and do right no matter what others do.
6. STOP. Prepare to meet God.
You will meet God. “For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad” (2 Corinthians 5:10).
It could be today. Or it may not be for a number of years. While you are still alive, you can prepare. You don’t have to live in fear of meeting God if you turn from your sinfulness and put your faith in Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour.
“If thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved” (Romans 10:9).
Many people are running God’s stop signs. The results are accidents and tragedy. You don’t have to be among the casualties. By heeding God’s warnings, your life now can have meaning and purpose, and you can be prepared to enjoy eternity with the Lord.
7. STOP. Think about it.
“Now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation” (2 Corinthians 6:2).
— John Coblentz
Christian Light Publications, Harrisonburg, VA 22802 Phone (540) 434-0768.