Jesus said to him (the rich young man), “If you would be perfect, go, sell what you possess and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me.” When the young man heard this he went away sorrowful, for he had great possessions.”- Matthew 19:21-22
Illustration #1: author Kyle Idleman (Not a Fan) is at the gym working out on an elliptical machine that faces a window. He observes a large guy getting out of his car with his gym bag. Then this guy reaches back into his car to finish off his Blizzard from Dairy Queen prior to beginning his workout. He wanted to get in shape without making any personal sacrifices.
As Pastor Idleman points out in Chapter 9 (“Deny: A Total Surrender”) of Not a Fan, we can’t take the path of following Jesus without walking away from a different path:
“One way fans try to follow Jesus without denying themselves is by compartmentalizing the areas of their lives they don’t want him to have access to. They try and negotiate the terms of the deal.”
Illustration #2: While preaching to a few dozen people deep in a tribal area of Africa, two twenty-something young men committed to following Christ. The next day they showed up at the camp where Kyle was staying, each carrying a sizeable bag over their shoulder- because their decision meant they would no longer be welcomed by their families or village. Another missionary commented to Kyle: “They knew this would happen when they made the decision.”
Today’s question: Following your vocation loss, are their any paths you need to walk away from? Please share.
Tomorrow’s blog: “Jesus: consultant or Lord?”