I was working on a Sunday School lesson for this summer about the cost of following Jesus (LK 14:25-35). It isn’t an especially pleasant topic, because it forces you to think about how much you would really be able to sacrifice for your faith.
Could I do it? I don’t know. I’d like to think that I could find the strength (actually has very little to do with me, more like God giving it to me). But the thought of facing a difficult situation really is scary. I’m not talking the kind of situations that are hard – you know like standing up to someone or taking responsibility for a mistake – I’m talking the ones that could threaten your life or someone you love.
We had a Bible Study session not too long ago that presented a group of people who get Bibles into countries where it is illegal to be a Christian. Not only illegal, but punishable with imprisonment, torture and even death. Could I stand up for my faith under those circumstances? I hope so.
I was reading the jacket covers for some new CDs I got today by Julie Larson (if you haven’t heard her music – check her out, she’s awesome!) and there were some comments written there that really struck me. They really got me thinking – and I think that was the point…
Faith isn’t about comfort, it’s about passion. It’s true that when I’ve reached the end of my rope and I’m hurting body & soul that God is there to hold me close to Him and give me peace. But for the rest of the time I need to quit confining my Lord – instead of thinking about Him being Almighty & Powerful, I need to start feeling it. I need to hit my knees with the awe and reverence that I owe Him. I need to start looking to Him for guidance in every aspect of my life.
To paraphrase CS Lewis, “God isn’t safe, but He is good.” Wow. That turns my relationship with Him upside down. I’ve come to know that God likes to stretch us when we’re feeling too comfortable with our relationship with Him. He is going to ask alot from us, but He will never stretch us to the point we snap in two.
So as I sit listening to music and thinking about how much it could cost to follow Jesus, I know I’ll be able to do it – God will always be by my side to help me pay the bill.
Until next time…