Christian Discipleship 5

It’s not about me. Nothing is about me. Everything should be about Jesus. Is it discipleship that we really want? I think that way too often, at least for me, Jesus becomes a means to an end rather than the end in itself. This has been my big revelation this week, not that I have an epiphany each week.

Honestly, I’ve been after a lot lately, like comfort, happiness, girls, and sunny days. You know how it is. Happiness stands out to me in that list. When I wake up in the morning, is it really God I am after? Usually, it’s not. Rarely, do I get up out of my bed and pray that God would slap me in the face and point me in the right direction that day towards the fulfillment of His will. What I really want is to be happy. I don’t really care how it happens. I just don’t want to worry anymore. Why do I worry? Why am I sad? I’m confident that the majority of the answer to these questions has to do with flaws within myself rather than external troubles, which is reason enough to wake up seeking Christ rather than selfish desires. If we follow Jesus first, He’ll reveal His true nature to us. But, if we follow anything other than Jesus, then we’ll be led to something other than Him and fall deeper and deeper into this world, which is never good— I would know.

Something else I learned this week is how God doesn’t change His mind. He desires reconciliation in this world. When I think of this, I am immediately reminded of all the enemies in my life, and I realize that the nature of my soul has way too much to do with them. I let them rule me rather than lift them up to God. We need to pray that God will show us how He sees our enemies that we are angry with or feel awkward around. Ultimately, it won’t be their departure from our lives that will take them out of the equation; it will be them no longer being our enemies anymore that will be our internal peace. It’s reconciliation. Our enemies are weak people in need of mercy just like us. It’s too easy for me not to like people because I feel much safer when I’m alone. But, God is a relational God and we are called to be relational with people as Jesus was to everyone two thousand years ago. To me, being in relationship with people means being vulnerable and that has never appealed to me. I have to be utterly honest and say not many people seem qualified to take on my life. I enjoy pretending I’m the best kept secret. I don’t want to be found out by people. I like keeping God to myself and pretending I have more wisdom than everyone else, but I’m really just as confused about my life as anyone else is. I’m still struggling to find my way in this chaotic world.

I’ve known for a very long time that I am extremely exclusive and have a hard time reaching out to people that think differently than me and disagree with what I believe. I do a pretty bad job at mediating God to all people. The problem is that the best listeners, as I’ve seen it, are not the people of this world, they are the socks in my dresser, they are the birds in the trees, they are the stars in the night sky, they are the angels in heaven. I forget that Jesus welcomed all kinds of people into His life and indentified with them. He went far out of His way to love us. So, each day before I go out the door, I pray that God will be my everything. I pray that He would make me a light unto the world that day because I have the hardest time stepping out of my comfort zone and being a disciple in this world.  Part of being in an intimate relationship with God is going to bed in the rain and waking up green. It’s Jesus that renews us. And, thus, it’s all about Jesus, not me. If I want to get anywhere in this life, I need to seek the one eternal thing, that being Christ. Knowing this, it’s not happiness I’m after (happiness is temporary), but I’m learning to desire joy, which is eternal as a consequence of a life of faith.

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