Title: FOLLOWING JESUS CHRIST – 2
(In the worst but still following)
Then Peter began to say to Him, “See, we have left all and followed You.” So Jesus answered and said, “Assuredly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or lands, for My sake and the gospel’s, who shall not receive a hundredfold now in this time—houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, with persecutions—and in the age to come, eternal life.Mark 10:28-30
Our journey of following Jesus Christ was never promised to be a fun-fare or one without confrontations. It is like swimming upstream. You know, it’s easier to swim downstream than to swim upstream against the current. The world is facing different directions and rushing at those directions, not knowing where they’re headed. In the midst of that rush, you and I are suddenly aware and turn around. We are now moving with our backs towards destruction and our gaze to Salvation. However, in this new direction, each step requires twice the effort we used to make, why, because now we’re going upstream.
Like we learnt the last time, there is a price for following this Jesus. And He Himself has asked us to count the cost and decide whether to go all the way, because there’ll be no room for those who turn back. Consider these:
Luke 17:32-33, Remember Lot’s wife. Whoever seeks to save his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life will preserve it.
But Jesus said to him, “No one, having put his hand to the plow, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.”
Jesus, in John 14:26-27 and 16:33, told us that we will have His Holy Spirit to help us THROUGH the challenge by teaching us and reminding us (in case at some point we forget our values and foundations and go astray). He also showed us that while we follow Him, we will have troubles (tribulations), things that will press us on every side, but, again He shows us that we will have our peace IN HIM. So, we will rejoice because, although we lose everything on the outside for the sake of our Kingdom pursuit, we have something which can’t be taken, and it’s in us, the Lord Jesus and our salvation.
And so we press on. When things are good and when things are worse, we press on. When it looks like all Hell’s broken loose against us, we press. When pleasures and pressures surround us and want to divert us, we remember where our focus is: Jesus Christ. So, as our cross, we pick up this life everyday and move through life. We don’t fight our battles like men do. We don’t fight men, but beasts. We don’t spill blood, rather we expose the kingdom of darkness. We don’t bring men down, but we bring down imaginations, high things that exalt themselves against the knowledge of God.
Daily, we are like sheep prepared for slaughter, not sure what’s going to happen. Yet, in all these things, because of Jesus in us and the hope of glory before us as we follow Him, we are more than conquerors. We baffle the world with our confidence. We trouble them with our peace because they can’t understand it. We break them with our love because they can’t explain it. That’s you, believer, that’s you.
Now the just shall live by faith; But if anyone draws back, My soul has no pleasure in him.” But we are not of those who draw back to perdition, but of those who believe to the saving of the soul.
We live in challenging times, pressing us on every side. But remember, we aren’t here to play through life. We are on a journey of eternal value and glory and we aren’t going to throw them away. We will trust the Lord for grace to keep going without gasing out. We will trust Him to take our hands when we can no longer pull ourselves or see where we are going. He’ll refresh our souls and (as we continue to follow), lead us in the path of righteousness – Ps. 23:2-3
We are not of those who draw back. We live by faith. This faith takes God by His word and just follows it. As long as He leads, we follow, for we are His sheep. Don’t give up believer. He’ll lead us to quiet lands, Beulah (married, joined) is what we have in Him and HE won’t forsake us. Isa. 63:4
Ask the Lord for the grace to keep on following Him no matter the condition. And make up your mind that, as long as you live, it will be Jesus all the way, first and foremost. Be blessed.