What story do you want to tell?

We all will have a story to tell about our life, and we get to choose how simple or how complicated we want that story to be. When I think of this subject, I think of athletes, pastors, public figures, politicians, movie stars and even friends I have had in the past that have destroyed their own story. See, when you are holding your grandchildren and telling them about your life, you would like to tell the truth and not have to leave parts out of the story.

There are so many stories of people who had great lives, great wealth, great recognition and great reputations that just could not hold it together. I think of two well-known evangelists from the past that not only messed up their life, but also the lives of all those around them. They literally made what the Bible calls “fools” of themselves. They had the anointing and favor of God and squandered it. In addition, we all know stories about politicians, movie stars, and athletes that had it all and then lost it all.

I believe the big four caused most of their failures: jealousy, greed, lust and strife.

Many times when these desires and emotion are in you, it causes you to make large life-changing mistakes. When I think of how many people I have seen that destroyed their lives, I also think of great examples I know. There is this one prominent male actor in Hollywood who has been married to his high school sweetheart for 35 years. He has four grown daughters that still look up their daddy as their hero. That is the kind of people that inspire a generation and leave a legacy after they are gone. So many today leave a wake of destruction that affects the people in their life and all those associated with them; it is all because they could not hold their life together.

When you see people after the fall, the one thing they can never buy back is their reputation. I remember one athlete who was at the top of the top of his professional sport when he was caught in a life-altering embarrassment. I remember telling the guys I work with that he will never get it back together in his sport. See, he was respected and looked up to, and I believe it was the respect he had for himself that enabled him to accomplish such great things. Once he lost the public’s respect, he lost self-respect and his professional career never got back on track. He simply lost his way.

The problem with this situation is you don’t know what you have lost until you can never get it back. I have seen many people try late in life to get respect back that they have lost. It breaks your heart to see them longing for and striving for something as simple as what they used to have for free.

Be aware of the decisions you make because they have a much more broad effect than just you. Many times it is the difference of your children gladly telling people you are their mother or father or being ashamed of it. There are way too many good examples to follow than to follow a bad one. KT

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