Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Don't Be Like Them

Being a follower of Jesus, should we live according to our opinion or the instructions of Jesus? Should we be directed by our society or the commandments of the one who we claim as King? Sometimes it seems that somewhere along our walk we get disconnected from the implications of the decision we freely made to follow Jesus. It was our choice. It was our choice to allow him to transform our life. It was our choice to experience the second birth. Yet, somewhere, somehow, many of us have left off our desire to live like Jesus and now desire for ourselves.

We aren't losing ground because our churches aren't big enough or that we don't have enough programs. It isn't because our youth rallies aren't cool enough or our pastors not entertaining enough. It is because we no longer pursue a desire to live for Jesus but instead chase after the priorities of our world. Let's isolate one verse while keeping it in it's context. Jesus said:

Don’t be like them. Your Father knows what you need before you ask. (Matthew 6:8)

The words of Jesus. A message for every age but especially for today. Don't be like them. Don't be like the rest of the world. Don't be like those who make life all about survival, possessions, working themselves to death. Don't be like those who store away treasures that they will never get to spend. Don't be like those who search for escape in the distractions of this world. Don't be like those who seek purpose in things that will have no value in eternity.

Jesus told us not to be like them but instead to spend our days seeking the things of the Kingdom. As citizens of this Kingdom, as children of our Father, we are to pursue and discover the priorities of our God, the things he considers to be important. If this does not attract you or have any interest for you, you should understand that you are not where you need to be with Jesus.

It's easy to get to that wrong place. It only takes a neglect of our relationship with Jesus, a neglect of God's Word, a neglect of prayer, a neglect of worship, a neglect of church. For a while we feel okay and everything seems fine and then we even start to lie to ourselves. But decide to be honest for a moment. Is Jesus still the greatest love of your life? Is your eternity the greatest priority? Is your love for people and concern for their salvation your greatest interest? Is your life about yourself or others? Are you distracted by the things of our society?

Don't be like them!

Now is not the time to faint and fall away. Now is not the time to sit and rest for a while. Now is not the time to become distracted. Time is short. Know the Father's heart and pursue those things.

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