When Is It Not Really Following Jesus?

Imagine living the dream.

You’ve established a stable, sustainable family business. You create good jobs, pay taxes, and tithe to the local church. You’re able to provide for your family and give generously to others who aren’t so fortunate.

You work hard, and that’s okay. You’re thankful to God for the opportunities and blessings He’s provided. You pray each day that you’ll be able to continue, and perhaps grow, your business. If you can purchase more equipment and hire more people, the whole community will benefit.

It’s not about getting rich. It’s about building something, a legacy you can hand down to your children, something that will bless the world.

I just described Peter, John, and James—Jesus’ closest friends. They were living in many ways what we call the American Dream. They were the small business folks that drive our economy, create jobs, and make our communities such great places.

And Jesus showed up one day and said, “How about if you leave all this and follow me?”

And just like that they walked away from their businesses, from nets and boats and families, to follow a man they’d just met.

Would I do that?

I picture myself in the garage, changing bike tires, preparing for summer training. This guy walks up the driveway, and somehow I know Him.

“Come. Follow me.”

Honestly, I don’t think I’d do it. I don’t think I could leave Becky and Monte and just take off.

I know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking that’s a false hypothetical and it’s highly improbable that Jesus is going to ask me to desert my family.

You’re right, of course, but I don’t think that’s the point.

Following Jesus means being willing to let go of some of the stuff that’s so important to me. It means following His dream, not mine. I’m getting a sense that if it hasn’t cost me much, I might not really be following.

In fact, I might be asking Him to follow me. I’m pretty sure that’s not what He had in mind.

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Copyright 2008-2013 by Rich Dixon, All Rights Reserved. Used by permission.

Rich is an author and speaker. He is the author of:

Relentless Grace: God’s Invitation To Give Hope Another Chance. Visit his web site www.relentlessgrace.com

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