What’s Jesus Worth To You?
This question has been at the forefront of my mind lately. First and foremost, concerning myself…. what is Jesus worth to me? How valuable do I find Him?….. evaluating my life, I’m realizing that I don’t value Him near as much as I want to, or near as much as what He demands of me. That sounds negative, doesn’t it? That Jesus demands me to value Him. Our ignorance of His greatness produces that pessimistic attitude in us when we hear that He demands our worship. To the carnal ear, it sounds as if Jesus is some egotistical, self-centered jerk that craves constant attention. Oh, how far off, infinitely far off, that is. If the unbelieving world would only realize that Jesus demanding us to follow Him is Jesus demanding us to do the very thing, the only thing, that can give us unshakeable gladness and wholeness.
I’ve had quite a few conversations lately that have ended up centered in on this question: What’s Jesus worth to you? I’m noticing that people avoid coming to Christ, or live in disobedience to Christ, because they are blinded to the reality of how valuable He is. The Son of God, the slain Lamb of God, crucified for the sins of His people… He’s stunningly beautiful. But they can’t see it… they won’t see it. They hear Him say, “Come to me, you who are weary and heavy laden, and I will give you rest for your souls” — but they cast their eyes downward, latch onto their sinful desires, and in doing so—whether they know it or not— stare right into the face of the God who died for sin and say, “NO. You are not worthy of me. I will not worship you. I will not believe you. I will NOT come.”
It’s gut wrenching for me to ponder on the reality of this, how unbelievers reject the gospel of God’s grace and illogically pursue their own self-centered, fruitless and empty agendas…they bypass fountains of living water and stoop down to sop water out of bacteria infested mud puddles.
But what’s even more gut-wrenching is when I realize that many times, Matt Moore responds to God’s gospel of grace in this way as well—-every single time I willingly sin against Him. And not only every time I sin in action, but also every time I sin in lack of action. When I watch porn, I’m rejecting the gospel of grace in that moment. But when I don’t share or live out the gospel, I’m also rejecting the gospel of grace in that moment. Since almost the moment I was saved, I’ve been adamant about not living the typical ‘Americanized’ version of Christianity. The “go to church, read the bible, and live a good life” version of Christianity. Yet, this is exactly where I have found myself the majority of the time. I want Jesus to be worth more to me than that—because Jesus is worth more than that.
I want to live extreme in Christ—for Christ—by the power of Christ in me. I want to see every opportunity, no matter how mundane, as a gospel opportunity. Whether that means sharing the gospel, or pursuing a relationship with someone with the goal of sharing the gospel, or just saying “have a blessed night” to the worker at Subway rather than just walking out silently…… whatever it means to live extreme for Christ, I want to do it. In each moment.
While I sincerely desire to leave the emptiness and fruitlessness of “American Christianity” behind me and really grab hold of and follow Christ, I’m also aware of how dull my heart is. How many times have I felt this kind of passion for the Lord and desire for His gospel to be spread, just to find myself a few weeks later apathetic about the whole thing? COUNTLESS times. Living a life filled with the glory of the gospel is going to take a lot more than just human will and effort…. it’s going to take the real presence of God. The past few weeks I’ve made changes in my daily life and routine in order to put myself before God— to make myself available to be filled with Him. It’s one thing to ask God for Him to fill us with Himself…. but I think it’s another thing when we actually show Him in our actions, and not merely words, that we want Him. For me personally, this was pretty practical… like going to the Bible when I’d usually go to TV. Or going to prayer when I’d usually go to Facebook. There are so many idle things in our culture… fruitless things… that we tend to be so passionate about (our time commitment to these things shows it)….. yet when it comes to the Lord we’re often too disinterested to even get off our beds and to our knees.
The more I press into the Lord… the more I want to press into Him further. The tighter of a hold I get on Him, the more I lessen my grip on the comforts/pleasures/things of this world that keep me back from Him. My prayer is that as a united body, this generation of believers would see the fleetingness of this world and grasp hold of the eternal gift of Jesus Christ….. and forsake everything to have Him.
Lord, let us not flippantly glance at Your Cross and live lives that are empty of Your glory. Let us not wallow in apathy when it comes to Your Gospel. Shake us, Lord. Shake us and get the filth of this world and our selfishness off of us. Renew in us a love for You…. a fire for You. Do not let us wink at our sin, and view it as nothing—-but let us see the enormity and grossness of our sin…. so that we would see the enormity and graciousness of You.
“And whoever does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me.”- Matthew 10:38