As I began gathering my thoughts and praying about my goals for next year, I suddenly became aware of a very obvious but often underlying point. Everything I am considering, the core around which I am planning every action, is Jesus Christ. I have reached a point in my life where this is becoming as natural as breathing to me. No longer am I making plans based on what my whims and desires might be or setting my aspirations on making a significant amount of money. No, everything revolves around Jesus. My dreams are to do things that will draw others to him. My joy comes from the thought of freeing the oppressed and seeing the name of Jesus taught to all nations and people groups. I don’t say this to point out how much I’ve grown (indeed I would argue that having been a Christian for thirty-seven years now, my progress has been ridiculously slow), but rather to say that if Jesus is not who He said He was, I am basing my life on foundation of deceit and empty words. In other words, I’m betting the farm on Jesus.
I’ve been asked how I could possibly believe the things I do. The whole story seems rather fantastic and rather imaginary, does it not? I have also been told that it takes a lot of faith to believe the way I do. As Steve Taylor once penned in a lyric, “Don’t you know by now why the chosen are few? It’s harder to believe than not to.” It’s far easier to dismiss the Biblical message and the Gospel as a fanciful story written by suspicious men of days long past. It’s easier to live a life that is accountable to no one other than yourself. Who wouldn’t enjoy the thought that we should indulge in all of the best this world has to offer? Christianity is viewed as an archaic set of rules meant to limit our freedom and subject us to judgment. Couple this with a beginning that ultimately cannot be proven, and we see why so many laugh in the face of the Gospel.
I believe that reality is the exact opposite. While the story is truly fantastic, it is no less plausible and actually far more logical than any alternative the world has offered. When accurately studied, the whole of evolution is untenable and hopelessly ridiculous. I find that it takes far more faith to believe in the magic circumstances of primordial ooze and it’s equally fortuitous progression into human kind than it does to believe in creation by a loving God who possesses intelligence far superior to our own. I find the sacrifice of Christ on man’s behalf hard to fathom from the standpoint of what we deserve, but also see it in perfect harmony with the character of God revealed in Scripture. The last thing I find in a life of following Jesus is a lack of freedom. I have never felt so free or at peace as when I am seeking Him. I never found freedom in anything the world offered, only temporary satisfaction that was quickly exchanged for long term bondage. That is not freedom! The so-called rules of Christianity are actually things we choose to do out of love for our Lord. We don’t give up or miss out on anything. Instead we bask in the glory of the love of Jesus. I have seen Him answer prayer; I have lived a life that defies explanation outside of Divine intervention. I am not sorry for, nor doubtful of, what I believe.
So I’m all in. I am betting the farm on the truth of the claims of Jesus Christ. My life will mean nothing outside of Him. Every step I take, I take with the intent to follow Him. My goals and aspirations revolve around continuing His mission. My passion is to become the person He created me to be so that I might express His love to others and work for His justice in a broken and hurting world. This allows me to face the future with an invigorated attitude and confident direction.
In what are you placing your faith? Do you have a firm foundation on which to build your life? Are you convinced that Jesus is who He said He was? True hope, true freedom, are found only in Christ. Decide today to follow Him and give Him all of your life. Your dreams and desires are safe with God. Like me, you can feel confident on betting the farm on Jesus Christ.