Wanted: Christ Followers
I’ve often wondered what a job posting for a “Christian” would look like. Probably something like this:
Wanted: Disciple to follow Jesus.
Job Description: Tell people about the love of God. Be mocked and laughed at by former friends and family. Spend countless hours teaching Sunday School classes, baking cookies, cleaning pews, mowing the church lawn, and participating in VBS and choir.
Pay: $0 per hour with no hope of a raise.
Benefits: Heaven. And you can eat some of the cookies.
Requirements: Patience, Kindness, Love, Charity, and mad cookie making skilz.
Get the picture? Being a Christian is something akin to boarding a wooden sailing ship bound for the Antarctic just to see what’s there. You’re promised extreme discomfort with little chance of survival. Okay, American Christians have a pretty good chance of survival, but the discomfort is still there.
Be honest. Even if you’re not one to preach the gospel to all living things, you feel like a lumberjack at a bridal show when you’re among your unsaved co-workers and family. And trust me, if you’re not uncomfortable yet, give it time. The more time you spend in God’s Word and among fellow Christians, the more the things of this world will seem alien to you. I seriously cannot comprehend the excitement of a group of men discussing the opening game of the college football season. Yet I recall a time in my former life when I would have joined right in (though I usually had to pretend to know what I was talking about).
We all seem to remember the promises of God that make us feel good. Things like a hope that surpasses all understanding. But we seem to gloss over things like the shunning of the world and, oh yeah, tribulation, persecution, and death. We all know how it ends. We’ve read the back of the book and it gets messy before God steps in and gives the whole world a time out (you know…after the fire, darkness, and open sores).
Being a Christian means not being comfortable among non-believers. If you are, dig deeper. Seek God with all your heart. When you find Him, you’ll lose everything you used to love. You’ll lose your life. But what you gain is so far and above that which you’ve lost that you’ll hardly notice anything is missing. I know it seems an odd request–please make yourself uncomfortable. But that’s what the gospel calls us to do. As Dietrich Bonhoeffer said, “When Christ calls a man, he bids you come and die.” And die he did, caught in an assassination plot against Adolf Hitler.
Are you willing to come and die? Are you even willing to wait in the car while your colleagues go into a strip joint during a business trip? As Christians, we are on call twenty-four seven. Each one of us may be called up at any moment to do the Lord’s will, which may very well involve suffering and even death. Don’t underestimate this oath which you’ve taken. The day you fell to your knees and said the “sinner’s prayer” did not just result in a get out of hell free card. You enlisted in God’s army. You are not your own. You’re His. He payed dearly for you. To reject your duty is to reject Him.
Are you ready? Is there a part of this world you still cling to? Pray for God to show you. Pray for Him to strip every last vestige of worldly desire from your flesh. Only then can you serve Him. Only then can He bid you come and die. And you’ll rejoice in the opportunity to do so.