-John 6:60, 66
Jesus was a popular guy until he said, "I am". Once He told the disciples that He was the Son of God, it was hard for many of them to believe. I mean, here was a man they followed around and watched perform miracles and heal sick people. He definitely wasn't normal, but the whole Son-of-God thing just was too hard for some people to understand, so they stopped following Him. Jesus didn't come to entertain us. He didn't walk this earth to put on the world's greatest circus act. Jesus came to bring glory and honor to God. He had to share hard words with the disciples and those around Him. He had to say what was pretty hard to understand and believe--He was and is the Son of God!
David Nasser says that we should think of God as a head coach. At any sports practice, your coach will tell you what you are doing wrong so that you can get better. Jesus is the same way. He reveals areas in our lives that need to be completely turned over to Him. We can never have a vibrant, growing relationship with Christ until we have completely surrendered to Him. This requires a daily funeral to yourself. You must die to your selfish desires and give the steering wheel of your life to God.
Proverbs 3:11-12 says, "My son, do not despise the Lord's discipline and do not resent his rebuke, because the LORD disciplines those he loves, as a father the son he delights in." When Jesus is telling you the tough truth, remember that he loves you. He isn't telling you tough stuff to hurt you. He wants to shape you into a woman after His own heart. Nasser quotes, "If we genuinely want to follow Christ, we must be ready for him to point out those things that come between us and him, the thing or person that we cherish more than him." Be open to hear God's words....remember that He loves you!
When Jesus does reveal the idols in you heart remember....
-Focus on Jesus.
-This may be a difficult day, but it will lead to new experiences of the presence of God.
-Focus on scripture for encouragement.
-Pray, pray, pray! You aren't in this alone!
-Get some advice from a pastor, your parents, or godly woman.
This morning's chapter was pretty tough. I mean accepting discipline from anyone is never easy, but hearing some pretty tough words from Jesus is HARD! After I read the chapter God immediately began to reveal areas in my life that are not completely surrendered to Him.
Today God gave me an awesome analogy! (I love it when God's words are so vibrant and full of life!) He said, "Emily, you are standing on the edge of a cliff. I am waiting for you to jump off the edge into My arms. You are anxiously looking over the edge. The idols in you heart are like chords holding you....preventing you from trusting Me. Once you cut the chords from your life, you can trust me and jump into my arms. You do not need to fear falling, for I will catch you. I love you so much. Trust me today." Well, needless to say, God and I had some great conversations today. And I am ripping off those chords that are holding me back. You can too! But remember, fighting idolatry takes time. Have you ever heard the saying "Rome wasn't built in a day"? Well, in order to defeat idolatry you need to stay in the fight and never give up. Even if you only cut one chord a day. That is one step closer to trusting God than yesterday. Hang in there, we are all in this together!
Coming Up....how does it feel to be ruined?