Would you rather… ?
- Drink Coke or Pepsi?
- Eat steak or lobster?
- Be Lebron James or Mother Teresa?
- Work 100 hours/week as a CEO or 25 hours/week as a parent?
- Stay in bed or go to church on Sunday?
- Be poor and worldly famous or insanely rich and unknown?
- Say you believe in Jesus or serve the poor in the slums of India?
We’re afraid to commit to our choices these days. Afraid that by saying Yes to one thing, we say No to everything else… and what if one of those No’s is really good? And what if one of those Yes’s turns out to be wrong? What then?
Some choices are pretty easy… others are really hard… but there’s one that’s truly important. The Gospels point out two roads we can take: We can choose to say we believe in Jesus or we can actually believe in Jesus and imitate him.
“Not everyone who says to me ‘Lord, Lord’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father in heaven.” Matthew 7:21
Jesus is more interested in our spiritual development than getting us to worship him. He doesn’t perform miracles to impress us or show off. He does them to show us what we can do… what we are capable of. If we are only fascinated with the idea of Jesus then we will miss the call to imitate him and be a disciple.
Peter was the chief disciple, full of ambition and bumbling words… but he knew that Jesus gave away his power. He knew that Jesus was driven to show others how to get to God. So Peter says, “Tell me to come to you on the water.” And Jesus does. But when Peter starts to sink, Jesus forces the issue:
Why did you doubt?
Only Peter knows.
If he can figure it out, maybe he won’t do it again.
There will always be more storms and waves that need to be walked on… why wouldn’t you try to figure it all out?
Being a disciple means uncovering the hidden self and changing. Development is paramount. Substituting belief in Jesus for personal transformation will not work. Otherwise, we’re just standing there saying, “Lord, Lord.”
And it isn’t gonna work in the end.