Do a Google search of “Three C’s” and you will find many:
- Three C’s of Sucess
- Three C’s of Leadership
- Three C’s of Business Communication
- Three C’s of Marketing
- Three C’s to Help Children Suceed
- Three C’s of Strong Writing
The list goes on and on. The Three C’s of this blog don’t necessarily all fit together under one heading. I just had a few things that I wanted to write about and the all started with C. I guess they might all connect in one way or another, but that’s probably coincidence.
I’m not sure that this blog is going to teach anybody anything. There may or may not be a lesson here. I’m going to admit that this blog is more for me. I wanted to actually write this down so I could come back and reflect on it. If you gain some nugget of information or find it something for you to apply to your life, I’ll count that as a blessing.
This week, my wife asked if I had heard a Christian song called “Confidence” by Sanctus Real. I had not. I told her I would give it a listen. I found that it struck a chord with me. Here are just some of the lyrics:
I’m not a warrior
I’m too afraid to lose
I feel unqualified for what you’re calling me to
But Lord with your strength
I’ve got no excuse
‘Cause broken people are exactly who you use
So give me faith like Daniel in the lion’s den
Give me hope like Moses in the wilderness
Give me a heart like David, Lord be my defense
So I can face my giants with confidence
I cannot begin to tell you how many times I have woke up afraid to face the day or the times I have been afraid to face a challenge. Even recently, I felt “unqualified” for a task I had to undertake. I love how this song reminds me that God uses “broken” people to do things. I once had a pastor tell me something along the same lines when he said “God often does His best work when things seem to be at their worst.”
The song goes on to talk about some of the traits of great men in the Bible and how we can use those traits to be confident in all we are to do. David faced his giant with confidence, and we can too with His help.
This brings me to the second “C” – Character. The character traits of those mentioned in the song are things I hope to have daily in my life.
It mentions the faith of Daniel in the lion’s den. A study of Daniel in the Bible will show that he was also a man of great devotion. His faith and devotion were unwavering. He knew no fear, and had a lot of faith. What a great example.
The song mentions the hope of Moses in the wilderness. He was in the wilderness for 40 years with a group of people who were praising God one day, and complaining about God the next. One can only imagine the great amount of patience that Moses had to have during his time with them. Some of us can’t handle 40 minutes with relatives, let alone 40 years! Moses, through all of that, led them. Another great example.
Then the song mentions the heart of David. He is often called a “man after God’s own heart” because of his bravery and his passion for justice. David was a great man of prayer, many of them recorded in the book of Psalms. He is a great example of a man who always sought guidance from God during times of chaos.
This got me thinking about other biblical examples of strong character traits. There are many of them, and I am only going to mention a few here. I’ll start with Abram/Abraham. Here’s a guy who is 100 years old (his wife was also old), never had children, and God tells him he is going to have many children. He is told he will be the father of a “great nation.” When he finally has a child, God tells him to sacrifice him. Can you imagine? Here’s the child I promised you, now sacrifice him to Me. He was totally prepared to do it and God saw his faith. Isaac went on to bear his own children and Abraham was indeed the father of a great nation. His faith was tested and he was faithful. What an amazing example of faith.
In Genesis 6, God tells Noah that he is going to flood the earth. He tells him to build an ark to save his family and the animals of the earth. He was about 500 years old when he was told this. Some figure that it took him about 55 or so years to complete the ark. (Keep in mind he also had to make sure there was food, water, provisions and such to survive on the ark while it floated. That’s a big job!) Talk about a guy who had endurance! Noah sure did.
Many people talk of the patience of Job. I think patience is a good word, but you could also say that he had perseverance. He is a man who suffered some very terrible things in his life time. Those things happen to him one after another. His children, cattle, and servants all die at the same time! He suffered through so many things, and yet through it all he worships God. He persevered through terrible times, and in the end he comes out of it blessed with more than before. When I think of Job, I think of the old saying, “You have to go through the storm to get to the rainbow.”
Lastly, I want to talk about Paul. He is called Saul before his conversion. He was a huge persecutor of Christians after Jesus was crucified. He led the charge to throw people in jail who were preaching about Jesus. He also had many Christians killed because of their faith. In the book of Acts, Saul is confronted by the risen Lord and converted. He went on to write 13 very important books in the New Testament! He is a great example of change. He was this terrible man who persecuted Christians, and went on to be one of the greatest examples of change in all of Scripture!
Which brings me to my third, and final “C” – Change.
The third C, came up in conversation with my friend, Jeff. I mentioned how sad it was that people get branded or judged to always be one way. There are way too many people in the world who do not believe that a person can change. People change every day! I am NOT the same man I was 5 years ago. Sadly, there are many people who believe that people can’t change. That is just not true. People can change – but they have to want to change.
Sam watches this show called “Intervention” on TV. It follows people who suffer with addiction. They are confronted by family and given the option to get treatment for their addiction. Some chose to get treatment, while others do not. They make a choice.
Change begins with a choice. A person has to chose to change their way of thinking. A person has to chose to do things a different way. A person has to chose to stop doing things that lead to certain behaviors. Change can happen, but not every one chooses to change.
It is wrong for us to believe that people can’t change. It is wrong for us to “brand” people as being a certain way. There are people who feel that they are qualified to make a judgement and say, “He says he doesn’t drink anymore, but you know he does!” Exactly what is it that qualifies you to do that? Isn’t there a saying that says, “When you point a finger at someone, there are three more pointing back at you?”
There are some of the people from my past, who go around talking about “giving grace” to others. Some of them even stand in front of church congregations preaching this. Yet they are the very ones who judge and brand people. They are the ones who gossip about others. They are hypocrites. They enjoy making other’s look bad by spreading lies, rumors and falsehoods. They are far from perfect, and they are master manipulators who will do and say whatever needs to be said to (1) make them look good and (2) to accomplish whatever works to their advantage.
I saw a T-shirt recently that read on the front “I’m not the man I ought to be, but…” On the back it read, “Thank God, I am not the man I used to be!” What an amazing quote! This is exactly how I feel! This blog serves as a reminder to me that I am a new man. I have made positive changes in my life, and while there are many who brand me as being “like I was,” I am changed!
Adam Lindsay Gordon’s words above are words to live by!
I pray each day that as I live my life, people will see me as a man of faith. I hope they see me as having the character traits of some of those biblical men who I mentioned earlier in this blog. I pray that God helps me to be a faithful man, husband, father, and friend. I pray that that He uses this “broken” man’s story to help others understand that change is possible!
Thanks for reading!