Many People Are Going In The Wrong Direction While Pursuing “The Good Life?

I saw on the news last week that a lady drove the wrong way on I-10 for quite a distance (through New Orleans East and onto the New Orleans/Slidell bridge) before she realized that she was going in the wrong direction. Upon coming to the realization that she was on the wrong side of the freeway (I guess all of the oncoming cars she was dodging for miles was the big clue), she pulled off to the side on the New Orleans/Slidell bridge until the police could arrive and assist her. Thank God no one was hit or harmed in any way, but I can only imagine the fear that she and the oncoming drivers had because she was going in the wrong direction.

We all know people who are going on the wrong direction in their lives. As we learned in this past Sunday’s sermon, they’re chasing the “good life,” trying to find purpose and fulfillment in life through “looking good,” “feeling good,” “finding someone good,” and “having the goods.” And ultimately in their searches they’re coming up empty. They may look good, feel good, have someone in their life and even prosper financially, but they’re still empty emotionally and spiritually because they haven’t really found “the good life” that God wants us to experience.

Now, the Lord does want us to experience “the good life.” Here are some Scriptures to remind us of that.

  • The Lord – “For I know the plans I have for you, . . . plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. “ (Jeremiah 29:11)

  • Jesus – “I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” (John 10:10)

  • Paul – “Teach those who are rich in this world not to be proud and not to trust in their money . . . Their trust should be in God, who richly gives us all we need for our enjoyment. . . . By doing this they will be storing up their treasure as a good foundation for the future so that they may experience true life.” (1 Timothy 6:17, 19)

So, what does the Bible teach us about living “the good life”? Here are the points that our Pastors and I shared in response to that question this past Sunday.

  • Living the Good Life requires Pursuing Godliness. Paul wrote in 1 Timothy 6:11-12, “Pursue righteousness and a godly life, along with faith, love, perseverance, and gentleness. Fight the good fight for the true faith. Hold tightly to the eternal life to which God has called you . . .” He was saying that righteous living combined with faith, love, perseverance and gentleness leads to a better life and better relationships. Paul also wrote in Romans 6:16, “You can be a slave to sin, which leads to death, or you can choose to obey God, which leads to righteous living.” Almost all of us would agree with Paul that “obeying God which leads to righteous living” is a better way of life than “being a slave to sin which leads to spiritual death.”

  • Living the Good Life requires Trusting God. Paul wrote in 1 Timothy 6:17, “Tell those who are rich in this world not to be proud and not to trust in their money, which will soon be gone. But their trust should be in the living God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment.” Now, the Bible does teach that the Lord wants to bless His people with financial stability. And there are some people throughout history that God has blessed with financial prosperity. Those include Bible personalities like Abraham, Isaac, Job, Solomon, Joseph of Arimathea and Barnabas, and many Christians throughout history. But Paul warns us in 1 Timothy 6:17 that if we’re not careful wealth can make us prideful, and that we need to always understand that wealth can be temporal. So, if we want to continuously live “the good life” we have to constantly be focused on trusting God.

  • Living the Good Life requires Giving Generously. In 1 Timothy 6:18 Paul wrote, “Tell them to use their money to do good. They should be rich in good works and should give generously to those in need, always being ready to share with others whatever God has given them.” A Pastor approached a wealthy man about giving some money to the church to help complete a building project. The wealthy man said to the Pastor, “Obviously that you haven’t heard that my mother is dying of cancer and doesn’t have the finances to get the medical care she needs. And that my brother is about to lose his house because he can’t pay his mortgage. And that my sister is about to lose her car because she can’t pay her car note. And that my 2 children are about to be kicked out of college because they can’t pay their tuition”  And the Pastor said he didn’t know about those things. The wealthy man then said, “And if I’m not helping any of them, what makes you think that I’m going to give any money to the church or this building project?”  A lot of people are like that. They are so focused on own desires, wants and needs that they’re not willing to be generous with the Church or with others. But they are among the most miserable people on the planet. The happiest and most blessed people in the world are those who are generous givers to the Lord’s work because they see lives being transformed and they know the Lord will reward them now and in the future.

  • Living the Good Life requires Doing Good. Paul also wrote in 1 Timothy 6:18, “Tell them to use their money to do good. They should be rich in good works . . .” The question is, “Are you “rich in good works?”  Are you involved in helping the needy, serving the poor, using your gifts and talents to minister to children, teens, senior adults or other adults? The happiest, most joy-filled people on the planet are not those who are self-focused or self-indulgent; they are those are constantly looking for ways they can serve and help others, inside of the Church and outside of the Church.

You can watch the first THE GOOD LIFE sermon by clicking on this link. Be sure to do that if you weren’t able to join us this past Sunday. And I also encourage you to share this message with others. By the way, we’re going to continue THE GOOD LIFE sermon series this coming Sunday at Celebration Church. Plan to join us in-person or online, and ask others to join in with you.

This past Sunday at Celebration we also had 398 people sign up to be a part of one of our SERVE TEAMS at Celebration. But we need many more volunteers if we are going to minister to the people who are attending our services at our Celebration Campuses. You can inquire about our Church Ministry Teams by clicking HERE, and also let us know of your interest in participating on a regular or occasional basis. We’ve discovered at Celebration that the happiest people in our Church family are those who are regularly involved in serving the Lord and others with their time and abilities.

Also, at Celebration we have launched our 52 Challenge. In our STEPS TO SUCCESS study (January-February) we learned how God enabled Nehemiah and the Israelite people of his day to rebuild the devastated walls and gates of Jerusalem in just 52 Days. The 52 CHALLENGE is our effort at Celebration to raise the funds needed to complete the rebuild of our Campuses that were damaged in 2021 by Hurricane Ida. Essentially we’re asking every Celebration attendee to give generously above your regular Church offerings to our 52 CHALLENGE offering over the next 52 Days, or over the next 52 weeks. You can do so by giving a large one time gift, or you can do so by giving weekly or regularly. You may also have stocks, bonds, jewelry, property or other items that you would like to give towards this effort, so that we can complete the rebuilding of our Campuses. You can find out more about the 52 CHALLENGE by going to

Celebration has always been a Church Planting Church, launching new congregations locally, nationally and around the world. Very soon, we will be launching out many from our current Iglesia Celebration Congregation to become Iglesia Lugar Seguro, the Church of Safe Refuge, which will be pastored by our current Iglesia Celebration Pastor, David Speed.
Over the years our Spanish speaking congregation has grown to become one of the strongest Hispanic congregations in our area, and they are ready to launch out and become their own Church. This transition will take place over the next few weeks. At the same time, we will continue hosting worship services and ministries for Spanish speaking people at our Airline Drive and Mandeville/Covington campuses and at other Campuses in the future. We are grateful to be a part of reaching and ministering to the Spanish speaking people of our region, nation and world.
Finally, I want to encourage you to plan to join our entire Church family on Friday, March 17, for our annual Celebration At City Park Night. Beginning at 7 pm on March 17, Celebration members and their friends will be able to join Crescent City Christian School Students and their Family members for a fun-filled night, enjoying the beauty, rides and food of New Orleans famed City Park. We can experience all of this for a significantly reduced price. And attending will also give us the opportunity to connect with other Celebration members from our 9 local Celebration Congregations. To purchase Celebration At City Park Night tickets, click HERE. Vicki and I look forward to seeing you there.