How often do we forget to zoom out, look at the big picture, and count the cost of something before making a major commitment? Everything of value has a cost associated, including our decision to follow Jesus. But what exactly is that cost?
Today was baptism Sunday at VOUS Church. Over sixty individuals in our VOUS family were celebrated as they made a public declaration of their commitment to follow Jesus and we all took time to look into just what that choice entailed.
What does it mean to follow Jesus?
In Luke 9 we learn what Jesus wants us to know about what it means to follow him. Jesus tests this decision by letting us know that:
1. We may not have a place to live.
2. We may not be able to first settle our affairs.
3. We may not be able to tell our families goodbye.
Jesus is not really telling us what to do, but he wants to know if we would really follow him in spite of having to deny ourselves. This practical picture of Jesus’s message is that we must all prepare because salvation is free and happened at the cross, but the cost of actually following Jesus is a considerable one.
Jesus articulates this cost as dying to our fleshly desires. Flesh gives birth to the flesh whereas spirit gives birth to spirit. When we die to our flesh we experience a full reset. We are born again! No longer ashamed of who we are and where we come from, we experience A Full Reset! Resetting is actually a lot harder than it sounds!
“Everyone wants to go to heaven but no one wants to die”Rich Wilkerson Jr.
In order to truly understand what we’re denying, we must first understand what we need. According to Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, the basic human needs of air, food, and water must first be met before fulfilling the other needs. Once those basic needs are met, humans then long for safety, a place to feel secure, and once that is met, follows the need for love and belonging. The love one receives from community and family produces respect and esteem from others, which then translates into self-respect. The last step, self-actualization, is the step that most humans fail to reach. This step entails one realizing that they have a purpose, and although they may not physically see it, they believe it. This step requires wholehearted faith.
What does it cost to follow Jesus?
Every decision in life has a cost. Whether financial, physical, or emotional, our choices can affect the course of our lives. Not understanding the cost of something can be dangerous. Not understanding what following Jesus means is no different. Following Jesus has a real cost and even challenges our most basic needs! It involves trusting him with our fears, our finances, our trials, our loved ones, and even our lives. Trusting that our lives are best when in his hands.
Salvation is free, but discipleship will cost you everything. Though the cost often feels too high, the gift we receive from him far outweighs what we sacrifice. What often feels monumental is nothing in comparison to what we receive from Jesus. He sustains us and meets our every need. Because of him, we can give up ashes for salvation, the wages of sin for a gift from God, confusion for clarity and death for life, the life found in Jesus. These things can only be found in Jesus. So, with eyes fixed forward, follow Jesus and yield an incredible harvest!
Listen to the Full Message
Just once is never enough! Listen to this week’s message and more by subscribing to the VOUS Church Podcast on iTunes.
Crews are on this week! On Monday, Thursday, and Friday, our church will be gathering in small groups all over Miami to connect, hang, and laugh together.
I Love My City!
For this month’s I Love My City, we are collecting food for our very first Thanksgiving food drive as a church! Fill up a grocery bag with some Thanksgiving essentials and bring it with you to JDD this Saturday, November 19th, from 10:30AM to 1:30PM.
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