In today’s world we lament a lack of commitment. We applaud and show excitement when people last long in in their job or position. Why? We applaud because we don’t see it very often! We lament that people just can’t stay committed. We complain. Yet, when talking about encouraging commitment to God’s church we get shy about it. We sometimes say we can’t push for it because it will drive people away. This makes me ask – What does it mean to be a disciple?
When Jesus was asked what it meant to be a follower of His, He described discipleship in two ways. First, He described it as a type of love. In fact, the type of love we were to have for Him was supposed to make all other loves look like hate. He said, “If anyone comes to Me, and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be My disciple.” (Luke 14:26) No shying from commitment there! In fact, this teaching almost offends us, doesn’t it?
The second way Jesus talked of being a disciple was in cross-carrying. He said, “If any man would come after me, let him deny himself, take up his cross daily, and follow me.” (Luke 9:23) Two words leap out at me from that description: cross and daily. Both of those words speak of commitment. A cross is tough to carry. It is especially tough when you think about the end of the journey: death. Doing anything daily is a conscious decision that requires commitment. Put the two together, and you and I receive this call – commit permanently to a hard choice: follow me.
As we consider what is necessary in the Christian life, we must take a close look at the type of commitment we are giving Jesus. Without a Jesus-level of commitment, what are we saying about Him? What are we saying about this truth upon which we say we are risking our lives? If His call doesn’t demand much from us, then what is it? It is past time for God’s people to commit to His purpose for them. Are we committing to that purpose?
Something to think about,
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