“Then He said to them all, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me.” Luke 9:23
“Do you want to follow me, or do you want to do what you want to do?” the Spirit of God said to me one morning.
How quickly we who believe in Jesus Christ as Lord can be to call ourselves His followers, and to say we want to follow Him, that we are committed to following Him, that of course as we believe in Him we also follow Him. But when we are totally honest with ourselves, and we look at our everyday lives, at how we fill up our schedules, our calendars, our agendas, how we make our plans, what choices we make and how we make our decisions, what we say yes to, and what we say no to even when we really sometimes want to say yes, when we make decisions and take actions, when we allow thoughts into our minds, when we consider what we think about most of the time, when we listen to the words we speak, the words that come gushing out of our mouths, when we look at the inside of our hearts, at what matters most to us, are we truly Christ’s committed followers? Or, do we need to make some serious changes in our lives when it comes to our priorities, our decisions and actions, what we allow ourselves to think about, what we say, how we are living the lives the Lord has given us?
That morning, I was deciding about whether or not to go somewhere. Somewhere surely that would have been pleasing to God. To join a gathering of people meeting in Christ’s name for God’s glory. It turned out the Lord didn’t want me to go that day. He wanted me to rest, and to write, and to do whatever else He had planned for me. And I believe He was testing me and giving me this message. The test? Did I want to follow Him, or did I want to do what I wanted to do? What would I do? I yielded to the Lord because He is Lord, because I love Him more than anything or anyone else, and because my life is His. And because following Jesus isn’t about doing what we want to do; it’s about humbly submitting ourselves to Christ’s lordship and doing what HE wants us to do no matter our own desires.
Sometimes the Lord will lead us in things and in ways that are absolutely what we want to do. Other times, He will lead us totally contrary to what we want to do. As God’s children, as Christ’s servants, as believers in Jesus Christ as Lord, as His followers, regardless of what we want or don’t want, the way we are to live is to FOLLOW JESUS – wherever His Spirit who lives inside His followers may lead us. For His glory alone, AMEN!