Minister and best-selling author John Bevere believes that your choices today will impact your destiny forever.
In fact, he's so passionate about this belief, he penned an entire book regarding the importance of keeping one's eyes heavenward, entitled "Driven By Eternity" back in 2006. Ten years later, the pastor has released an expanded edition of the best-selling book, including a brand new cover and discussion questions for group study.
"The whole focus of the message of 'Driven By Eternity' is to call believers in America back to having an eternal mindset and perspective," Bevere told The Gospel Herald in an exclusive interview. "Eighty percent of the people in U.S. say they're Christian, yet I'd be willing to say that 8 out of every 10 people in America are not living with an eternal perspective, they're not building for eternity. That's the difference. We need to prepare for what's coming on the earth and for what we're called to do for all of eternity in being believers of God and followers of Jesus Christ."
Using Scripture as its basis, "Driven By Eternity" urges Christians to ask themselves whether the eternal or temporal is driving and motivating their lives. Bevere, who with his wife, Lisa, founded Messenger International, shared how he was inspired to write the book after coming to the realization that the majority of Americans live with what he calls a "70-80-year perspective."
"We used to make the statement, 'Don't be so heavenly minded that you're no earthly good,'" he explained. "So, we kind of swing the pendulum over to where now, we're just interested in how God wants us to have a peaceful, quiet, productive life - Americans are very set on being comfortable and successful now. If you're living for comfort now and success now, you're not going to want to hear about laying your life down, being fruitful, about denying yourself and taking up the cross and following Jesus. But, God has created every one of us to build His kingdom - I don't care who you are. Every single person has a calling on our lives, and that is to build God's eternal kingdom."
The pastor quoted Colossians 3:1-5, which reads, in part, "Set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things."
"Jesus says we're to maintain a passionate relationship with Him," Bevere said. "But, if we give ourselves to the things of this earth, our affections will be set on this earth, because what we seek is what we set our affections on. So, we will not affect the people in our sphere of influence like we're called to, because we have a mindset that is different than what God wants us to have."
To learn how to make your life count, both today and forever, Christians need to immerse themselves in the word: "God says in Romans 12 that we change when we change the way we think, and the only way we can change the way that we think is to get His Word into us," the "Good or God?" author said.
"That's what the enemy wants to steal from people; he wants to get them out of the Word. If he can get them away from the Word, they begin drifting. If we drift, then we start living more like the world - we're conformed to the world. Now we just say, 'I'm forgiven, I'm a Christian,' but we don't have that power, we don't have that influence to change people's lives, and that's what it's all about."
He concluded: "The only thing that endures forever is the rewards we're gonna receive at the judgement seat as Christians. And, our rewards are all dependent upon how we live in the positions that God has placed us in this earth."