Fresh air

This, from Pete Greig’s The Vow portion of The Vow & The Vision:

The disciples of Jesus were often challenged to make sacrifices for Him, but the price they were asked to pay was consistently dwarfed by their desire to follow. To put it crudely, the sacrifices they made for Christ always seemed “worth it.”

The way of discipleship–of covenant commitment and sacrificial worship–modeled by those first followers and explored in this book, is costly and hard. Anyone who says that it is easy to follow Jesus is a liar. He Himself said that the way is narrow. But nothing we forgo in the cause of Christ–wealth, popularity, kudos, not even our very lives–can come anywhere close to the return. The price we pay to follow Jesus–whatever it might be–will acquire for us the most astounding “bargain” of our lives!

“I tell you the truth,” Jesus said to them, “no one who has left home or wife or brothers or parents or children for the sake of the kingdom of God will fail to receive many times as much in this age and, in the age to come, eternal life.”

When the Holy Spirit fills our lives, we begin to want what God wants and to see what God sees. In His grace, God interrupts our mundane little lives and calls us to follow. As we obey, our hearts are changed. The old covenant of our selfish motivation and “far-off” vision is replaced with a new covenant written on our hearts, and we now share God’s priorities, longing for the fulfillment of His will whatever it may cost. The sacrifices of obedience are outweighed by the joy of being chosen to walk, one step at a time, in relationship with God.

By Joel Maust

Joel Maust is a marketer, blogger and photographer living in the beautiful Flathead Valley of northwest Montana.

One reply on “Fresh air”

Well, what you have written, Joel, is pretty much a verbatim conversation Dr. K and I had on the phone earlier this week. His comment about following Christ was something like, “No one told me that it was going to be this hard when I signed up for this “thing” 30-something odd years ago… had I known then I may have made some different decisions throughout the journey…” We got to talking about a book we’ve both read… “Shattered Dreams” by Larry Crabb…

“Shattered dreams open the door to better dreams, dreams that we do not properly value until the dreams that we improperly value are destroyed. Shattered dreams destroy false expectations, such as the ‘victorious’ Christian life with no real struggle or failure. They help us discover true hope. We need the help of shattered dreams to put us in touch with what we most long for, to create a felt appetite for better dreams. And living for the better dreams generates a new, unfamiliar feeling that we eventually recognize as joy.”

The context of our conversation was about some major trials in each of our lives… but our mutual conclusion was… “Life sometimes sucks, but God is good and we want not no one else but Him and His will!” So rock on! :)

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