It Sounds Arrogant, But You Really Are “The Master of Your Fate” (Gospel Light Minute X #388)

This is the “chief of sinners,” Daniel Whyte III, president of Gospel Light Society International, with the Gospel Light Minute X Podcast #388 titled, “It Sounds Arrogant, But You Really Are ‘The Master of Your Fate’.” I’m here to remind you of what the Bible says, that “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners” like you and me.

These haunting and thought-provoking words were written by the nineteenth century poet William Ernest Henley in a poem entitled “INVICTUS”. Henley was well known at the time in England, but, is best known today for the last line of this poem, which was written from a hospital bed as he suffered with tuberculosis. This line has been quoted in books, movies, and tattooed by many. It was quoted by Winston Churchill, Ashleigh Brilliant, and many people give Nelson Mandela credit for this phrase because he quoted it so often.

The words seem almost arrogant and defiant. However, if you will just think about it for a minute, these words are, oh, so true. You really are master of your own fate and the captain of your own soul. Continue reading “It Sounds Arrogant, But You Really Are “The Master of Your Fate” (Gospel Light Minute X #388)”

GLMX #149: Invictus or Invictor?

Have you ever heard this phrase: “I am the master of my fate: I am the captain of my soul”? What you may not know is that those two short sentences are the last two lines of a poem by English poet William Ernest Henley titled “Invictus”, the Latin word for “invincible” or “unconquerable.” The full poem goes like this:

William Henley’s poem is a poem of defiance in the face of great odds. At the age of 14, he contracted tuberculosis of the bone. A few years later, the disease progressed to his foot, and physicians announced that the only way to save his life was to amputate his leg directly below the knee. He underwent the amputation when he was just 17. Shortly thereafter, he was told that his other leg would have to be amputated. However, by enlisting the help of another doctor and undergoing intense surgery, he was able to save his other leg. This event, and his determination to live, enjoy, and control his life despite his circumstances, are what led him to write this poem while he was recovering in the hospital. Despite his disability, he survived with one foot intact and led an active life until his death at the age of 53.

Henley felt that he needed to be in control of his life, and he thought that he could control every aspect of his existence including what happened to him after he died. From his words, we see that he did not accept that there was an eternal being whom he could lean on for support in this life and for assurance of his destiny in the life to come. He wanted to be the “master” and “captain” of his entire existence.

However, the Bible tells us in Psalm 103 that we are but “dust.” It goes on to say, “As for man, his days are as grass: as a flower of the field, so he flourisheth. For the wind passeth over it, and it is gone; and the place thereof shall know it no more.” James 4:14 says, “What is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away.” And in Jeremiah 10:23, the prophet cries out, “O Lord, I know that the way of man is not in himself: it is not in man that walketh to direct his steps.”

As much as we may try to control our lives, we are not the masters of our fate. God is the one who is in control of the entire universe. The good news is that God has a great plan for each of our lives, no matter what your current situation is, and no matter how your life may be going right now. God says in Jeremiah 29:11: “For I know the plans I have for you, saith the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” God’s plan is for us to live a victorious life.

+ Plus, listen to Bart Millard singing “Victory in Jesus”