I believe everyone has a tipping point in their life. Most of us have several of them. These are times that determine if we decide to play life safe or go all out in our service of Jesus Christ. They are times that determine if we get bitter or get better (now you know who invented this phrase!). For me, my key tipping point was the summer of 2004. My parents had recently separated and it was kind of a rocky time in my life. But I distinctly remember God breaking through the confusion to offer me one simple question: Will you choose to view me (God) through my eyes or the eyes of other people?
I thank God daily that I made the first the choice. Looking back, it was in that moment that I could have gone one of two directions - towards God or away from him. I easily could have grown to resent God, become cynical, and looked at every Christian as a hypocrite. All I can say is I am so thankful for the incredible grace of God.
Since that time, there have been various tipping points that could have gone good or bad. What church would I decide to work at after Bible College? Where and when should I move? The list could go on.
There are what I call obvious and non-obvious tipping points (actually I just made this up right here on the spot). An obvious tipping point is...well...obvious. It might be a decision to serve God or reject him. An non-obvious tipping point will be more subtle but it is still critical. Maybe God has been talking to you about stepping out in faith to serve more, give at a higher level, or leave an association that is negative so that you can do something greater.
I have found that our response to these tipping points comes down to a critical decision: Will we choose to live our lives in the fear of God or live our lives in the fear of man. If we live in the fear of man, we will pull back, play it safe. The question becomes less about "what does God want me to do" and becomes more about "what do I feel comfortable to do." On the flip side, living in the fear of God is a game changer. When this happens, that crazy move to another country is not so difficult. That career God wants you to surrender to him looks less appealing. Why? Because you are suddenly living for a higher purpose. Your end goal is not living it up in this life. It is preparing for a life to come.
God seldom reveals in advance what awaits us on the other side of our tipping points. We will not see the pain of making a wrong choice or the long term pleasure of choosing rightly. I believe he does this to test our faith. Will we really trust him by choosing potentially a harder route in the short-term so that we can experience a greater joy in the long-term?
Are you facing a tipping point in your life today? Question: Will you base your decision in the fear of God or the fear of man? My prayer is that you make the right choice!