Over 30 years ago I decided to follow Jesus no matter the cost. Back then we used to sing an old hymn.
“I HAVE DECIDED TO FOLLOW JESUS.
I HAVE DECIDED TO FOLLOW JESUS.
I HAVE DECIDED TO FOLLOW JESUS.
NO TURNING BACK, NO TURNING BACK.
Today as I reminisce about my life and about the path I have been on. I think to myself. “My, I had no idea what the pledge to follow Jesus would bring in my life or where it would lead me. In a very real since I made that pledge in spiritual and human naivety. But you know what? I am glad I decided to follow Jesus no matter the cost.
When I made that pledge, I did not know that my first car that was my baby would be vandalized because of my faith. I did not know that I would be ridiculed in high school. I did not know that I would have to make hard decisions about family, jobs, hours I work, and women. All those things happened. And yet, I am still glad I made that pledge.
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No Regrets About Following Jesus
Do you want to know why? Because in spite of all that I have walked through in life. Knowing Jesus does not compare. He has been my friend for years when no one else wanted anything to do with me, or so it seemed.
Christ has helped me to overcome, being almost homeless once. He helped me heal from a broken marriage.
Jesus helped me heal from broken relationships and friendships. He helped me be a single dad to teenagers.
And has always supplied my financial needs.
He has always brought just the right person into my life at the right time to encourage me on my path.
My Jesus has truly been a friend that sticks closer than a brother.
Following Jesus No Matter The Cost
Sometimes following Jesus has been lonely. I have been single 11 years now. Sometimes it has challenged me to the core in my very character.
Like keeping my commitment to the people that God has entrusted me with instead of following the path someone else wanted me to follow.
Like forgiving thousands of dollars in debts over the years, rather than keeping a tally of what everyone owed me.
And also forgiving the emotional debts that have been owed to me over the years rather than keeping that person in the prison of my heart.
Following The Beat Of A Different Drummer
To follow Jesus no matter the cost is not for the faint of heart. Not for the person who is afraid of their own shadow. Not for the ones that want a comfortable Christianity.
It is for those that are willing to follow the beat of a different drummer. Who are not afraid to swim upstream. Who will go against the crowd if need be to do what is right?
Following Jesus is for Peter’s who are man enough to allow God to give them hope of a second chance.
For Paul’s who get knocked off their donkeys and have to humble themselves to see again.
And the John’s who will write something that doesn’t make sense and risk ridicule because he knows it was God speaking to him.
Or the Luther’s who went against the institutionalized church by proclaiming that the shall live by faith, and incurring a death sentence upon his head.
The Wesley’s who would travel by horseback to meeting after meeting in common stables and warehouses to bring the gospel to the masses.
The Moody’s who saw children who couldn’t read or write and figured out a way to meet their need and share the gospel, and started what we call today Sunday School.
The Finney’s who saw a need for man to decide for Christ and started giving altar calls.
Are you marching to the beat of a different drummer? Are You Ready To Follow Jesus No Matter The Cost?
But not just the greats! But the single mom’s who take their kids faithfully to church.
The dads who know that God wants them to provide for their families, so they work two jobs.
The purple haired grandma’s who pray and pray and pray until all their children and grandchildren are serving Jesus.
The missionaries who leave country, family, culture, and comfort to win people they have never met for Jesus.
To single, divorced pastors who go to sleep alone every night and count it a privilege to do so for the sake of the broken soul who needs Jesus.
I have decided to follow Jesus! I hear the beat.
How about you?
Blessings! Pastor Duke
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