Our old home was a dungeon. We used to be chained there… in the dark...waiting to die. Then Jesus freed us. He broke our chains, he took our place and then he paid the price of our punishment. We couldn’t earn this freedom. We couldn’t buy this freedom. We couldn’t steal this freedom. He gave it to us freely. And so it cost us nothing to accept this gift.
But there is a cost to following Jesus. It’s important to know this. If we blindly follow Him, expecting rainbows and candy, then we will fall away the moment any form of conflict comes our way. Below I have listed some of the costs:
The cost of alienation: We no longer belong to the world. We are outcasts to its ways. We are set apart and different. No longer can we laugh at the lewd jokes. No longer can we gather in the workplace kitchens and exchange gossip. No longer can we bad-mouth someone else because they bad-mouthed us. We must face persecution without striking back.
The cost of self denial: God must come first. We are no longer number one. We must deny our pride, our self reliance, our stubbornness. God must come first, even above our spouses, our children, our friends and our jobs.
The cost of reliance: We must give up our independence. We must put our trust in God and rely on Him in everything we do.
The cost of vigilance: We can’t relax and take it easy. We must be forever vigilant for the subtle things that turn our attention away from God. We can’t take a break. We can’t fall back on our old ways.
Are you prepared to pay the price of following Jesus? Can you think of other costs to add to this list?
Tomorrow I will talk about the REWARD of following Jesus, which far out-weighs the cost.