God’s way with me has always been thematic; He leads me along a path where His word, books, words from others, and worship songs speak with similar tongue until I finally hear His heart for me.
I have mentioned before in earlier blogs that I have been deeply impacted by a book written about Hudson Taylor (“Hudson Taylor’s Spiritual Secret”); I am presently reading it for the second time.
Hudson Taylor was given a supernatural burden for the evangelization of inland China in the 1800’s. He believed as a 20 something year old man that God was calling him to leave all and follow Him for the sake of the gospel.
I read Jesus’ teaching and I am stirred afresh:
“And He said to all, “If anyone would come after Me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will save it. For what does it profit a man if he gains the whole world and loses or forfeits himself?” (Luke 9:23-25).
“Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me, and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. And whoever does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me. Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it” (Matt.10:3-39).
This reads extreme, but maybe because it is? How many of us have actually followed Jesus with this kind of faith and love?
Another biography I am thinking of is “Through the Gates of Splendor”, a story of God calling a young man named Jim Elliot and his companions (with wives) to leave their home and country behind and follow Jesus to the heart of the jungles of Ecuador.
The lives of these missionary men were speared to death by the Auca Natives; the very people group they believed God sent them to.
The miracle of this calling is that God called the wives of these missionary men to go back to reach the people who took the lives of their husbands.
It was Jim Elliot who penned the words:
“May the Lord teach us what it means to live in terms of the end, like Paul who said,’Neither count I my life dear to unto myself, that I might finish my course with joy…'” (from pg.18 of “Through The Gates Of Splendor”).
How precious is my own life to me?
I believe that God is up to something, He is looking for those who will lay down their lives for the sake of the gospel and that call has not changed my friends…we have!
We are surrounded by deep attachments, comforts and securities; surrounded by excuses, what if’s and fear, but in the meantime thousands are dying all over the world and slipping into a Christless eternity.
We are not get any younger and time is like the clock ever moving ahead to the next second, minute and hour.
Am I watching from the pew or am I counting the cost and willing to leave everything should God place such a call?
To what extent will I live for Jesus?; My answer to this question must determine how I live my life!!
The clouds are bellowing with pink and grey outside my living room window and I wonder, how much longer until the King of Kings returns? The sky tonight certainly looks majestic enough to boast His entry!
The King IS coming…where will I be found? Will I be ready? Will those who know me know why my face in lifted heavenward?
WHO am I living for?
“For me to live is Christ and to die is gain. If I am to live in the flesh, that means fruitful labor for me” (Phil.1:21-22).