John Adams + Joshua

Posted on August 19, 2008

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Dara and I just finished the HBO series “John Adams” (a Tom Hanks film). It was a seven part series on the life of the second president of the United States. Definitely worth the time if you get a chance. I have also just finished reading the book of Joshua tonight. The lead characters both died tonight – John and Joshua. It got me thinking and my thoughts drifted to this idea:

Over the course of my life, to what cause will I spend my life?

Joshua spent his life leading courageously during a time that defined Israel for all generations that followed. As I read his final words to the Israelites, I found such a resolve. Honor God. Love him with all your heart. Do not turn from him. Remember the things he has done. Joshua spent his life being led by God and miracles were the reward for his faith and resolve. I am inspired to live a life that reflects the same faith, courage, sensitivity, wisdom and passion that Joshua displayed.

John Adams is a great American hero. He was a leading voice in the struggle to found a free America. He made decisions and took a stance that risked his fortune and his life. Without his sacrifices, history very well could have written a very different story for our country. As we watched his life unfold, however, it was quite clear that he had made a decision to choose his calling over his family. Years upon years were spent away from his family and relationships with his children were irreparably fractured. However, if not for this decision, what would our country have become? Such a difficult thing to process and arrive at a conclusion that is fair.

It’s easy for me to judge from this position 200+ years later, but it has inspired me all the more to keep my priorities in order. The definition of “spend” is to “use or give out the whole of; exhaust.”

I intend to spend my life for God’s purposes. I want Him to use me in any way that He sees fit. However, if I do not spend my life for my wife and my children – my family – first, I have failed in my greatest calling. I was reminded of this tonight when I was playing Madden ’08 with Max tonight and he looked at me unsolicited and said, “I love you, Dad.” Words cannot express what my heart felt in that moment.

It’s amazing where one can find motivation. Tonight, I was motivated by a documentary of a great American hero and the story of a hero of our faith. John Adams – a great leader during trying times in American history. Joshua – a man of great courage and leadership. Two men from which we can learn so much.

I pray that I spend my life on the things that are most meaningful.

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