As we embark on the journey of following Jesus, it is important to understand that this is an all or nothing commitment. True followers of Christ did not ask Him to be Lord of their life with their fingers crossed or thinking that they would maintain some areas of control for themselves. No, when we committed our lives to Jesus, if we were sincere, we signed over everything to Him.
From that point forward we promise to do whatever He asks of us, regardless of the consequence. Attempting to serve God while keeping anything from Him is an exercise in futility and frustration.
In Matthew 12:24-30, Jesus teaches on this very topic. Within these verses He explains that any house divided against itself will fall. If we say we will follow Christ wherever He leads but balk when the path becomes uncomfortable, we are attempting to build a divided house. Following Christ is not always going to be simple, safe or easy; in fact most of the time it will be quite the opposite. Before even beginning to embark on the adventure of discipleship, we need to do a gut check and make certain this is what we really want to do with our lives.
Do you really believe He is who He said He was? Recognize that you may have to die for that belief, so you must be convinced beyond a shadow of a doubt that it is true. It’s okay to question what you really believe because only those who are sincere can withstand the trials they are certain to face. God is not fearful of, nor angered by, your questions. Everyone doubts from time to time, but you must know in your core that Jesus is the Son of God, that He died for your sins and rose again on the third day so that you might live. If you believe anything short of that, your house is divided and you will crumble in times of pressure. God isn’t looking to simply pump up the number of those who follow Him. He calls after those who will follow Him with a relentless passion and commitment.
Much of our frustration in pursuing Christ comes as a result of our trying to cling to the ways of our life before Him. We long to fit in with our friends and neighbors and to enjoy the pleasures society offers. Following Jesus requires both feet on the same road or you will continuously find yourself lost, conflicted and ultimately left behind. Unless our commitment is 100%, we might as well not commit at all. As Jesus said in Matthew 12:30, we are either with Him or against Him; there is no middle ground. When we do things contrary to what Jesus commands, we are living a life opposed to Him. If we continue to attempt to live a life rooted in both Jesus and the world, we will find our lives crumbling around us. Again, a house dived is a house soon destroyed.
Following Jesus is difficult and would be impossible were it not for the fact that He is always there to help us along the way. If we will keep our eyes focused solely on Him, if we will keep our feet on His path and none other, then we will find the joy and peace that can only be found in following Christ. It’s time to let go of those things we have held on to for too long. Jesus is everything to you or He is nothing at all. Do not live in a divided house; you cannot win. Surrender everything to God and engage in the adventure. I promise you’ll never want to look back.