When I first became a believer, I was fortunate to be swept up by an older believer and mentor into a men’s group where I first learned how to do life as a follower of Jesus. I was just glad to be around a group of men that I esteemed so highly. Looking back, I cringe at the things that would come out of my mouth. I was in sales at the time and I did well and as a result, lived a very materially-driven life. Breaking that pattern was hard, mostly because I didn’t realize how deeply it influenced my life.
Years ago, as a young marine, I spent the night on watch in the jungle of Thailand. As the sun rose over the treetops I had a unique view on a hilltop over the jungle valley. It was breathing taking and I knew it. However, it was a mere moment of relief shrouded in misery that preceded this moment and would undoubtedly follow, as the day proceeded and the jungle heated up and life continued into the next day and so forth. I felt in that moment empty, devoid of a soul. I didn’t feel that way simply because of the rigors of military life, but more so because of the moral compromises I had made up to this point in my young life.