When I read these words I think of the old hymn, “I Have Decided to Follow Jesus.” The lyrics of that hymn are so simple, so powerful, and so true. “The cross before me; The world behind me,” we sing. We raise our hands and continue, “Tho none go with me, I still will follow.” – but are we truly aware of what we are saying? Who – or what must I leave behind? Why can’t I have all of it – the hellish world and the promise of Heaven? Why is God so unfair? Peter’s words of 2,000 years ago ring so true today; and as I read them I cannot help but think about young people who are confronted with such a choice. Our world enthralls and addicts people to its never-ending conveyor belt of temptation and satisfaction as we lustfully pursue the desires of our will at the neglect of God’s. We read the words of Peter and sing the lyrics of the old hymn and think to ourselves, “who would want that?” “I am not willing to give up my self-satisfying lifestyle, my parties, my lust, and my gluttonous ways.” And so it is… As the world continues to evolve – we as a species continue to devolve – morally, ethically, spiritually – we are decaying from the inside out. We are fighting and drinking and playing and, well, living our way to Hell with huge, self-satisfied and entirely fake smiles on our faces and gigantic, God-shaped holes in our hearts. Please know as God’s creation that you do not have to live this way! There is salvation from the decay and the promise of eternal life in heaven. I urge you, brothers and sisters, LOOK UP and to THE CROSS! Be made Holy by the saving grace of Jesus Christ and EMBRACE your holiness! Be different! Be Weird! Show the world that there is, in fact, a better way of being and doing and LIVING! And always remember this truth – THERE IS NO SAFER PLACE YOU WILL EVER BE THAN IN GOD’S WILL.