Monday, January 09, 2012

What's Important To You

Your actions should be matched up with the right attitude.

Luke 14:25-30, 33 A large crowd was following Jesus. He turned around and said to them, 26 “If you want to be my disciple, you must hate everyone else by comparison—your father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters—yes, even your own life. Otherwise, you cannot be my disciple. 27 And if you do not carry your own cross and follow me, you cannot be my disciple.

28 “But don’t begin until you count the cost. For who would begin construction of a building without first calculating the cost to see if there is enough money to finish it? 29 Otherwise, you might complete only the foundation before running out of money, and then everyone would laugh at you. 30 They would say, ‘There’s the person who started that building and couldn’t afford to finish it!’

33 So you cannot become my disciple without giving up everything you own.

Popularity polls can be very misleading, they seek to know who is popular but they never ask why that person is popular, somebodies popularity could be based on misconceptions instead of reality.

In this scripture today, Jesus popularity was way up, the crowds are all excited and willing to follow him around as he teaches, heals and gives away free food. But was his popularity based on misconceptions about who he is and what his agenda is? It looks like following Jesus is a free ride, he talks about love, he feeds us and he keeps us healthy.

Jesus wasn't ever slow to set the record straight and today's scripture is no exception. Jesus told the crowd that "following" him required so much more than just "following" him through the dusty streets of Israel. Jesus told them that their allegiance would have to change, he told them that they would have to change their attitude and their actions.

Attitude is everything in following Jesus, trying to make yourself great or following just for the rewards is futile and if you think that a rigorous compliance to all of the rules will get you anywhere then you need to talk to the apostle Paul about his Pharisee days.

Right behind attitude is your actions, denying yourself and accepting the cross that Jesus has asked you to carry should only come from someone having the proper attitude, if you try to carry your cross with the wrong attitude then you won't carry it very far before you decide that it isn't worth it.

Is it worth it to give up so much for Jesus?

Matthew 11:28-30 Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.
It seems like you are giving up so much, Jesus is asking you to live a different lifestyle from the rest of the world, but what does the world really have to offer? Wouldn't you rather live for so much more?

The world is trying to sell you on ways to find joy, peace and happiness but the only way to get lasting results is from following Jesus Christ, he said that we will receive many benefits from following him and that carrying our cross will be so worth it. (Matthew 7:24-25, 19:29, Mark 10:29-30, Luke 11:28, John 14:27, 15:10-1)