By Rev Bobby Allen
As a boy I loved to read the Hotspur, the Wizard and the Rover, especially the Rover’s football story, “It’s Goals that count”.
I could hardly wait for the next week’s issue. As a boy I loved football, but wasn’t much good at playing it. I loved “Match of the Day” and “Football Focus”.
Who will ever forget the winning goal scored by David Healy for Northern Ireland against the “mighty” England at Windsor Park on 7th September 2005? I still feel like cheering when I think of it. Goals count - they win matches.
Goals count in life too. We need to have a goal; a purpose in life, a reason for living. So many people today drift along aimlessly.
The apostle Paul had a great goal – in Philippians 1:21 he says: “For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain”. Paul’s first goal was to stamp out the early church imprisoning Christians, but then he became the powerful preacher of the Gospel - amazing.
You see, Paul had an encounter with Jesus Christ on the road to Damascus which changed his entire life and gave him a new goal – “For to me to live is Christ and to die is gain”.
Paul grew to love Christ and wanted more and more to know Christ. He discovered that Christ was “the way, the truth and the life”. His goal was Christ!
Everyone needs a goal in life. Not only had Paul a great goal in life, he knew he would have a great gain in death. In Philippians he wrote, “For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain”. In Philippians 1 he wrote “…I desire to depart and be with Christ, which is better by far...”
In his book “A Godward Life”, John Piper a respected theologian and author wrote, “at the moment of death we will be relieved of the pain of this world. At the moment of death, we will be with Christ” He goes on to say “Christ is a more wonderful person than anyone on earth. He is wiser, stronger, and kinder than anyone you enjoy spending time with. He overflows with love and with infinite insight into how to use that love to make His loved one feel loved.”
Make Christ your goal in life and your gain in death will be priceless. As Paul says: “For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain”.