- Personal growth requires investment.
I'm reminded of a conference I attended a few years ago during which someone spoke of the idea of leverage and creating space. If something is worth learning or doing, and there are only so many hours in a day, therefore something must be sacrificed in order to make it happen. That may mean getting up a little earlier each day or spending less time with television or whatever it is that wastes your time.
Author and speaker Charles Swindoll, many years ago, made the decision to rise one hour earlier each day and to spend that time in writing. He has now written more than seventy books and become one of America's most respected pastors. An hour a day is a powerful thing. What changes do you need to make to allow your top priorities the time they deserve?
- There's no substitute for reading.
This is not intended to shame anyone - not all are cut out for academia - however, each of us should take advantage of our opportunities. As Mark Twain said, "The man who does not read has no advantage over the man who cannot read." It has been said that one hour of study per day in any subject will make you an expert in a couple of years. Try it with something you're interested in.
For those of you who commute, aren't audio-books just the greatest thing since sliced bread? Pop a CD in or download a podcast and make use of that time to expand your mind and your horizons.
- How you live your life matters.
Apologetics is really about people. It's about helping people in their search for truth. Sometimes it's easy to forget that we are dealing with people, not just facts. As 1 Peter 3:15 says, "But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect." To quote Lee Beach, one of the conference presenters: "A life beautifully lived is the most powerful argument we have for Christ."
Jesus said, in John 8:12, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” A close examination of the life of Christ is paramount to anyone planning on participating in furthering His Gospel. His was a life of service, of humility, of compassion and sacrifice. When He invited us to join with Him in His cause He didn't offer the perks of power - prestige, wealth, popularity. Rather He said “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me." (Luke 9:23)
We'll give the last word to Stuart McAllister - "How you live speaks volumes to others." Go shine a light in a dark place.
Book Review: Mere Apologetics
Aren't All Religions Equally Valid?
Book Review: "Why I Still Believe"
Thoughts on Suffering and Hope
"Truth" - by Ravi Zacharias