“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.” – Jeremiah 29:11, ESV
Jeremiah 29:11 is a very popular verse in scripture, one that is recited over and over again by preachers, priests, and Christians alike. In our moments and times of weakness and lost hope, we as bible-believing Christians find this verse as confirmation and affirmation that God has everything worked out and under control.
God spoke these words to Jeremiah to remind him of who he belonged to. When God speaks into your heart, and leads you into a very personal and intimate time with him ( a moment of truth), it is meant to be a time and a moment in history that you will never forget. When I made the decision to follow Christ, and give up my way of doing things in order to trust and obey his will, it was a moment in time that I will never forget. I was with Christ, and he was with me, but I hadn’t fully made the decision to convert into total Christianity. I was a “lukewarm” Christian as they say. I didn’t want to give up my life, but yet I believed in the one they called Jesus. I knew I wanted to serve Christ eventually – one day – but I didn’t want to pay the price.
What it costs to follow Jesus is what he himself described it as when he said,
“If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.” – Matthew 16:24, ESV
There came a point in time in my life where I knew I had a very important decision to make. Either I was going to keep my life – the fame, the fortune, the status and the money – or I was going to give up and sacrifice my life in order to follow Jesus. This was one of the hardest decisions I think I have ever had to make, and this will be one of the most important decisions you will ever have to make as a believer.
What separates a person who simply believes in Christ from a person who actually follows Christ, is their commitment level, and their desire to serve and follow God’s total and complete will for their lives. Those who are fully committed to the path and purpose God has set out for them will lay down their lives in order to follow the call that was assigned to their life.
I had to make this very important decision 2 years ago, and it changed my life forever.
In this life, there will be many choices and decisions that you will have to make. What the enemy likes to do is deceive you into believing that what you get here on earth is all that you’re ever going to get.
What the enemy doesn’t want you to know is that God has given and awarded us the promise of life, in and through his son Jesus. He has promised us, “life and life more abundantly,” (John 10:10).
God is not going to ask you to sacrifice a life that he has not already given you. This is a test.
Jesus was sent to heal the sick, give sight to the blind, and save the lost (ultimate redemption). He did not come down from heaven to earth, preach for 3 years, work miracles, cast out demons, and die on a cross for you and I, just so we could forfeit our rights to freedom, and choose a counterfeit, lesser version of the life God ordained for us. God has given each of us a measure of faith. With that faith, you and I now have the option and opportunity to choose life or death.
Will you use what God has given you, and make the decision to open up yourself to him and to the life that he has already promised you?
He is asking you to make a decision, and to choose wisely. This choice will cost you everything, so what are you willing to loose?
God promises us that what we give up in this life, he will give back to us one hundredfold, both in this life and in the life to come.
” Truly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or lands, for my sake and for the gospel, who will not receive a hundredfold now in this time, houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, with persecutions, and in the age to come eternal life.” – Mark 10:30, ESV
God is not pressuring you to make a decision that he has not already graced you to make. He is asking you to make a very cautious and critical decision that will change your life forever.
You have to ask yourself, ‘Who am I going to choose to serve, the father of lies, or the father of eternal life?’.
God bless you Saints.