Awaken Our Hearts, Heavenly Minded Lifestyle

You May Need to Give Up More Than Just Sin to Follow Jesus

I gazed at my phone’s blank, black screen. Did I just quit my job to stay at home full-time with my children and write a book? Discounting that I had never even posted a blog, until that moment, my career in sales had been my identity.

For some time, the Lord had been calling me to leave my job, but it was difficult to just walk away. So, I struck a “compromise” by working part-time. However, after much inner struggle, I finally bowed to Him, praying, “If this is your will for me, then remove this obstacle from me entirely.”

Soon afterward, my boss called to inform me that my job was changing, requiring me to travel and to resume my full-time position. Prayer answered.

Suddenly, I realized that obedience to God’s will meant more than just a conscious effort to avoid sin. Following Jesus not only requires sacrifice but also shifting our perspective from a perishable, worldly one to an eternal, heavenly one. This comes by focusing and refocusing on Christ, filtering thoughts and actions through the lens of the Word of God.

Following Jesus Requires More Than Not Sinning

The Bible tells us that being a disciple of Christ requires personal sacrifice, daily taking up our cross and denying ourselves by putting off carnal, fleshly desires and putting on Christ. For some, sacrifice means giving up personal comfort, financial gain, popularity or certain relationships. For others, following Jesus may demand giving up one’s very life.

Beliefs dictate behaviors, as illustrated in Luke 9:57. A man approached Jesus and proclaimed, “I will follow you wherever you go.” Jesus invited him to join Him right then, but the man replied that he needed to bury his father before he could do so. Another boldly asserted the same; yet, when told to forsake all, he also claimed that he must first “take care of things” before he could actually follow Jesus.

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