I sat down to check my messages and after spilling my guts to a friend he replied with many helpful reminders for when I'm tempted followed by, "Following Jesus is not a game."
I wonder if he knows that after 3 months that has stayed stuck in my head?
The problem I see around me so much today in Christians and in our churches is the lack of urgency and passion for God's glory & His Kingdom.
Am I getting on to people? Not at all. I'm merely trying to encourage my brothers and sisters.
When I asked Jesus into my heart years ago, nobody told me that my life was supposed to change. That God was going to slowly but surely flip my heart and I was going to have a desire to please Him above my flesh. No one told me so I wasted about a year or two of living for myself while still claiming the freedom of Christ yet refusing to live in it. How messed up is that? If you became a millionaire, would you still live as though you had a middle to low income? Of course not! So why, when we have the Bread of Life before us, do we choose to ignore Him as if we weren't saved?
"but we preach Christ crucified, a stumbling block to the Jews and foolishness to the Gentiles. 24 Yet to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ is God’s power and God’s wisdom," - 1 Corinthians 1:23-24
Christ's death on the Cross is considered a stumbling block and foolishness to those who don't know Him, yet to those who do we see Christ as God's power and wisdom. My question is where are you? Do you see Christ as a stumbling block or as a powerful and infinite reflection of God?
Following Jesus is not a game.
Following Jesus doesn't mean still living by your flesh and going to church on Sunday so everyone knows you're a "Christian". Following Jesus means dying to yourself, letting go of your wants and dreams and letting God take control. His ways are far better than our own (Isaiah 55:9).
I think we've all been lied to at least once in our lives. I don't want any of us to believe the lie that you can follow Christ and change nothing about your life. That is one the most damaging lies you could ever believe because your eternal life is at stake.
I'm not trying to be a Debbie Downer. I'm all for happy discussions and love and joy and butterflies... ;) but I've seen in my life and in others how we don't take things like our relationship with the Lord as serious as we need to.
"9 Don’t you know that the unrighteous will not inherit God’s kingdom? Do not be deceived: No sexually immoral people, idolaters, adulterers, or anyone practicing homosexuality, 10 no thieves, greedy people, drunkards, verbally abusive people, or swindlers will inherit God’s kingdom." - 1 Corinthians 6:9-10
Believe it or not, some people will NOT enter God's Kingdom and the above verse states who those people will be. Some of those things above could describe me before Christ, however, because of His sacrifice on the Cross and His choosing me I will be entering God's kingdom because of His grace! It's not hopeless, though it might seem like it.
Give God all you've got. Seriously. Afterall, Jesus didn't leave anything on the Cross but gave all He had for you. Don't think you can live both your way and God's way. You can't. No one can serve two masters (Matthew 6:24). Let's get serious about following Christ. You can be serious and still have joy. I know it because I so much joy in the Lord!! Stop playing a game and be part of God's team. Let's work together for His glory!
Peace & love in Christ to you!