This following post is adapted from Dr Sam Chand's message on Sunday 2nd September, at the C3 Oxford Falls 10am service. Watch the service here.
Now these are the words of the letter that Jeremiah the prophet sent from Jerusalem unto the residue of the elders which were carried away captives, and to the priests, and to the prophets, and to all the people whom Nebuchadnezzar had carried away captive from Jerusalem to Babylon;
For thus saith the Lord, That after seventy years be accomplished at Babylon I will visit you, and perform my good word toward you, in causing you to return to this place.
For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end. Jeremiah 29: 1, 10, 11 (KJV)
Everywhere Sam travels around the world, he gets asked how he got into a career in public speaking and writing. He says “by accident” because the path was not an obvious one but he has come to recognise it was because it was his destiny. We are all born with destiny in our hearts. "I have destiny, you have destiny and we have destiny".
Sam’s mother kept all of his school report cards and in the first few years, every teacher wrote that “Sam talks too much”. Now Sam talks for a living which just goes to show that God’s plans for you will not be derailed by what people say about you or even by what you say about yourself.
1. Destiny Decisions
We are the cumulative result of the decisions we have made both big and small. For Sam his big destiny decisions include moving from India to the USA, marrying Brenda (married for 39 years!) leaving the church he was pastoring to be the president of a university and deciding to resign from the university to enter his full-time speaking career. These are the big destiny decisions but even small decisions affect our destinies. How much dessert you eat may not seem like much but cumulatively it moves the scales. What destiny decisions are you making today?
2. Destiny Distractions
Ask yourself who or what is keeping you from where you want to go? If you are waiting for “one day” you will probably run out of time. If you have a destiny, do not be deterred or distracted but chase after it now.
3. Destiny Developers
Many of us have one or two big destiny developers, otherwise known as parents/carers. Not everyone has parents around to ask for advice so don’t neglect the chance to be developed by them or any other mentor figure you have in your life.
4. Destiny takes Determination
Life had it's tough moments and it takes determination. It takes determination to do things such as parent, finish your education or to keep coming to church and to serve the Lord. You have to work it and refuse to be thrown off course. Sam shared about when his daughter was pregnant with a son Jude, whom they had named and lovingly prepared for. Sadly the baby did not survive their family has since set up a school in India called the Jude Rockwell Academy. His destiny was to change hundreds of lives in a world he never saw. Sometimes things happen which feel like a huge setback but God can turn tragedy into triumph.
Jeremiah 29 was not written to a group of people enjoying life but to prisoners of war who had given up on returning home. They were a group who felt they had no destiny left (vs 1). But God says He has an expected end for them; a destiny He was taking them too (vs 11). You may think that your life is a mess but God has a destiny He is taking you too.
When Sam ended 10th grade, he failed every single subject. If you had told him in that moment that he would someday become the president of a university he would not have believed you. Despite the odds against us self inflicted or not God has a destiny, an expected end for us and nothing will stop it. So don’t be discouraged, keep going day by day and tell yourself: I have destiny, you have destiny, we have destiny and nothing will stop it.
Something to talk about:
1. Can you name any big destiny decisions you have made in the past?
2. What destiny decisions are you currently facing (big or small)?
3. Who/what is holding you back from where you want to go?