Saturday, December 2, 2017

Get Up

Jesus finds us sitting.  Stuck and contented in our broken world, He walks up and invites, “Follow me.”  Choice is no longer a concept but reality.  At first there is excitement.  The King is offering a different life, one full of joy, health, and expectation.  But the thought is quickly replaced with fear.  It is strange that Good can trigger fear, but it does.  We fear that which is newly unfamiliar whether good or bad. New feels uncomfortable at first like trying on a new pair of jeans - stiff and not broken in.

Fear is not the only thing that keeps us stuck.  Laziness is a close second.  I will need to get up?  I will need to do something different that takes effort?  I will need to part ways with my “stuff?”  Effort can be a powerful, self-imposed hindrance.  I wonder how many moments have been missed simply due to lack of effort?  Fear and laziness are enemies of life in Jesus.

Levi, in Luke 5:27, did something courageous.  He got up.  He left his place of brokenness and started walking with Jesus.  He traded in his greed for the goodness of the King.  He decided to acquire a new kind of wealth.  He became unstuck.  He looked at fear and laziness, and then into the eyes of Jesus.  His choice was swift.  He left his everything that brings emptiness to be with Jesus’ everything that brings fulfillment.

And you can too. Later Jesus is together with Levi at his table.  With many others gathered there as well, Jesus Calls out to all of us.  He declares, “I have come to help the sick because they need a doctor.  And I have come to help sinners experience the joy of repentance and forgiveness.”  Jesus is always Calling but He never forces us to comply - to get up.  He offers His hand, His hope, His unfailing love, but we must choose to receive and obey.  This Christmas season, don’t let fear or laziness hijack a life with Jesus - a life worth living.  Get up.

Ex nihilo,

R.J. Rhoden