Part 1. Is your life full of all God has for it? Would you label your life as “very good” or “good enough”? Our world tells us there are barriers and boundaries to what our lives God. But God says there is more. He calls us to keep climbing and seek what is better, to reach beyond “good enough”.
The Death of the Messiah wasn’t a spur of the moment turn of events. It didn’t come out of nowhere and take everyone by surprise. Two groups were involved in the condemnation of the Messiah. Both rejected the Messiah for their own reasons. These two reasons for Jesus’ death are simple, and they can creep into our own lives if we aren’t watching and guarding our hearts.
There are few who would ever choose to lay Jesus on a cross and nail Him to a tortuous death. Yet the danger still lies nearby that we would reject His rule in our lives. So let’s look at these Two Reasons for Rejecting the Messiah, and search our hearts to push out any sign of them.
Everyone gets hungry and hunger always comes back. Hunger is uncomfortable, it hurts. In our world there are millions of ways to be filled. Sometimes we even want to be filled with God. But when our hands our full of the pursuits we’ve chosen to fill the hole inside of us, or when we’re stuffed of things other than God, how can He pour the power and presence of Heaven we desperately need?
You did it. Someone stopped you on the street. A family member was over at your house for dinner. You stopped into a church without any clue as to what awaited you inside. And suddenly it all made sense. God is real. Jesus did everything you couldn’t do. Now you believe. You’re a follower of Jesus. The old is gone, the new has come, and you’re ready to start down the journey.
Before long some well-meaning but misguided person or group is going to start imposing rules on your life. Don’t do this. Do that. Fill your days here and not there. At first it sounds simple and you desire God so much that you go along with it. As the days turn into weeks, months and years, you learn to gauge how well you and those around you are doing at knowing God. You read your Bible and pray everyday. Your car can almost always be found in the church parking lot because you never miss a service.
Some of us really like rules. We like to-do lists and have apps for that. That’s right, we don’t just have one, we have a few. Because we don’t want to miss anything, don’t want to leave anything undone. So we’re going to work at it. One of the categories for your to-do’s is simple named, “God.” Your Bible reading plan is there. A list of prayer needs is there. There’s even a calculator for your tithes, missions support, child sponsorship and food bank donations. Plus a calendar with all of those services you wouldn’t want to miss, your discipleship course, conferences, book reading deadlines, and so much more.
Is this the relationship we are called to with Jesus Christ? Is it about to-do lists and rules? We want to stay close to Him and far from evil. Growth is the name of our game; we aren’t staying still because staying still is moving backwards because it ain’t moving forwards. I wonder what Jesus would have to say about all this doing and obeying.