What do we really need to survive? Well soldiers survive in the deserts with meals ready to eat and water, bodybuilders learn to survive during prep week, or fighters learn to starve and lose extreme weight for weigh ins.
You see soldiers learn to survive off minimum wants and needs because they want to survive and return home from deployments. Bodybuilders learn to survive prep week for a chance to win the big trophy. Fighters learn to survive weeks off punishment for extreme weight loss for a chance to win a belt, make weight, and a make lot of money.
We can adapt to anything as long as we understand what is in it for us! So why have so many people walked away, turned their back on Jesus, or rebuke Christians calling them two faced while going to church, especially with the knowledge of what is it for them. Yes streets of gold with enteral life.
I honestly believe this is happening because I think a lot churches try to sell Jesus as a solution rather than a relationship. Then when individuals experience job loss, death, or divorce in their lives, family, or close friends they lose faith. This of course brings a lot of confusion to a new, young, or non believers.
Church to a lot people is seen a business or country club. Why is that the case with a lot of people? Country club has always been an interesting choice of words. Country club’s typically have members, monthly to annual fees for membership, with very hypocritical individuals that love to gossip about everyone else’s problems but their own.
To these individuals tithing is a monthly or annual fee to the church, there are members in the church, and the people in church can be very hypocritical in and outside of the church. This seems to be getting worse than better as younger generations are getting out of college and starting their careers. Why is this?
Well when they left home they separated themselves from the country club mentality and occupied their time with many others things. At this point it is hard to get people back in church after a childhood spent in church. Have we really been taught why having a relationship with Jesus is so valuable and worth suffering for.
Aren’t we told in this life we will have pain, suffering, sadness, happiness, failures, victories, disappointment, or even some at the same time? Not really. When we are young cool bibles stories are told to us like books, youth ministry is filled with fun activities, food, and trips. Then it’s off to the college and the free world.
The issue in my opinion is we have lost the interest in our society of discipleship as Jesus did with his disciples. Even the closest followers with Jesus struggled to stand up against the Pharisees and their crowds. So why would it be different 2000 years later. We lost the ability of forgiveness and loving unconditionally. It shouldn’t matter the color, gender, married, single, occupation, or past sin. All that should matter is loving people for who they are. Those are the two ingredients to getting people closer to Jesus at a young age, which in return will keep them willing to sacrifice and be a little uncomfortable in the world to make a difference like Jesus. We have to teach our children at a young age how to have a realistic relationship with Jesus.
It is ACTION or WORDS. Anyone can say I will pray for you, hand you a dollar or 2, or pat you on the back. However, someone that truly lives like Jesus will show up in your darkest times and still be there months later, someone that truly lives like Jesus will show kindness to uncommon individuals, someone that truly lives like Jesus will sacrifice for someone even if they don’t know them, someone that truly lives like Jesus will forgive someone even if others think their actions or words are unforgivable.
We have to get back to ensuring the younger generations understand who Jesus was. In John 8 we see this, “But Jesus bent down and started to write on the ground with his finger. 7 When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, “Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.”
This is one of the most important scriptures to understanding who Jesus really was before they get another impression of Him. Are you walking through the day drawing lines for other people? Once you draw a line for someone and experience being unpopular, losing friends, getting threatened, losing your job, or willing to risk your life. Then you will want to fill that feeling over and over! Now you are starting to understand Jesus. Bottomline is teaching our kids to love the unlovable because that is how Jesus lived every day walking this earth.
As we close when we started with all these individuals, the soldier, bodybuilder, or fighter chose actions over words to survive in the task. Think about that for second. Words get OLD but ACTIONS always feel NEW every time! You can accomplish anything you want to but you have to learn to adapt and sacrifice a lot to get there. What are you willing to sacrifice to adapt to being more like Jesus?