|MAKING YOUR MARK|
|You only have one. You only have one life. What are
you going to do with yours? I hope you make the most of it. Maybe Iíll
read about you in the papers. Maybe youíll make the history books.
Maybe youíll have what some people call your fifteen minutes of fame.
Some men seem to have "made their mark" others seem to have
"made a mess." Each generation has its celebrities, its
heroines and its heroes. Your generation will be no different. There
will be the famous and the infamous. The fifth chapter of Genesis is a
little microcosm of humanity. It is called the Generations of Adam. It
is a brief list of men who made their mark. How can you make the most
out of your life? What will be your claim to fame? Here is how some have
made deep and lasting impact as they passed through this world.
# 1 By Being First
Some men are famous because they are first. Everyone knows who Adam was. Adam was the first. Many have made their mark in history by "being first." Magellan led the first expedition that sailed around the world. Who was George Washington? Everyone knows that he was first. He was the first President of the United States. Neil Armstrong was the first man to stand on the surface of the moon. Robert E. Peary was the first to stand on the North Pole. Every mountain climber knows who Hillary is. He was the first man to climb Mt. Everest. Jackie Robinson was a great baseball player. He maintained a 311 batting average for ten years, but that is not why he is famous. He is famous for being the first black man to play for the major leagues. Many have made a mark by being first. I met a man who proudly told me that he was the "first" in his family to go to college. Good for him! In his family he will always be known as the first. You might become famous by being first. You may make your mark by going where no one else has gone before, leading the way and opening the door for others.
# 2 By
Breaking the Record
Some are famous, not because they were first, but because once getting there they stayed the longest. It is their longevity that has made them great. They have broken some record of time. Methuselah is famous for having lived the longest. It was his longevity that made him famous. Grandma Moses, FDR, and J. Edgar Hoover share the common distinction of longevity. Some men are great in their capacity to endure. Perhaps your greatness will be found in your "staying power" and your ability to "stick with it ." Perhaps you are already famous in your circles for being "faithful."
#3 By Doing
Some are known for their accomplishments. It is their lifeís work that has made them renowned. No one talks of Noah without mentioning the Ark. Noah and Ark go together. This man and his work are one. Perhaps you will accomplish some great thing that will follow you all your days. There is Alexander Graham Bell and his telephone, George Eastman and his camera, Thomas Edison with his light bulb, and Henry Ford and his automobile. Perhaps you will be a success in business. Do the best you can at any job your hand finds to do. Then when someone needs a job well done, they will think of you.
4 By Right
Some have distinguished themselves by being associated with great men or with a great cause. No one would know who Shem, Ham and Japheth were, were it not for their relationship with Noah. There was Moses and Aaron, Paul and Timothy, Moody and Shanky. Finding the right partner seems to have been the key for some. Lewis and Clark, Abbot and Costello, Fred Astaire and Ginger Rodgers are names that go together because of some successful partnership. Be careful about your partners and associations. If you want to fly with eagles, donít hang around the turkeys.
# 5 By Being
Some have shame as their only claim to fame. Everyone knows that Cain killed Abel. Talk about making a mark! As a matter of fact, Cain was the first "marked man." Some have made a mess of their lives and the shadow of some horrible crime follows them wherever they go. John Wilkes Booth will always be the man who shot Abraham Lincoln, .Benedict Arnold betrayed his country and Judas Iscariot betrayed Christ. Al Capone was a mobster and Adolph Hitler was a monster. Some kid goes to school with a gun and shoots his classmates and his teacher. He has his fifteen minutes of fame and a life of sorrow. No parent wants to raise Cain.
While you may never be a monster, the Bible says that everyone is a sinner. Sin always brings sorrow and shame. Sin is the great negative that will cancel out any possible positive you may do. You can not do anything about Cainís sin problem. God wants you to deal with your own.
There is one man in the Generations of Adam (Gen.5) that is the most outstanding example of how to have a successful and fulfilling life. His name was Enoch. Although the Bible says little about him, it tells us everything we need to know. Recorded there is the briefest biography and yet the most profound and distinguished. It says, "Enoch walked with God."
Here is the greatest thing anyone can ever do. Here is the most challenging, exciting, and profitable thing that you can do. This is the way to a successful and triumphant life. Walk with God.
When everyone has forgotten who perfected the light bulb, or first climbed Mt. Everest; when no one will care who hit the most home runs or ran the fastest mile, only those who dared to walk with God through this life will be those who have lived a life that counts. Through their faith they will have made their mark.
Why not look inside Godís Book, the Bible and find out how to make the most of your life from the one who gave you the gift of life in the first place. It tells the story of Godís love which sent the Lord Jesus to be your Savior. It tells how Jesus died on the cross to pay for your sins and give you the power of a triumphant and endless life.