Ray McDonald's Blog

Thoughts and Reflections

Do We Love Jesus More Than Anything?

Matthew 22:37-38

37 Jesus replied: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and greatest commandment.

IMG_0301This is one of my favorite passages.  A pastor on the staff of a church I use to serve – during a sermon – said: the question isn’t the one we typically hear – how much of the Holy Spirit do you have?  The question should be – how much of you have you allowed the Holy Spirit to have?  He also reminded us that the Holy Spirit comes to transform us – to change us – to make us holy.

Today’s passage – as I reflect back on that message – caused me to think – how committed are we to God?  We talk about being saved – but are we only after someone to save us from Hell? Isn’t He also suppose to be our Lord – our Master?  If the Holy Spirit dwells in us through our salvation – what difference are we allowing Him to make in us – in our lives?

I know some Christians who have made radical changes in their lives.  Some have stopped smoking when they came to Christ – some immediately.  Some have cleaned up their language – no longer sounding like sailors.  Some have turned from drug and alcohol addictions.  Some have turned from pornography.  Some have turned from same-sex relations or extra-marital relations.  Some have made radical changes in their lives because of Christ in their lives – because of the Holy Spirit dwelling in them.

But what about those who haven’t battled with these type issues?  Are they OK as they are because their sin is not as outward and evident to some?  Of course not!  What about the sin of a bad attitude – or of being a gossip?  What about our thought life?  What about our greed – even as some mask it with a façade of generosity?

What about those among us who have a hard time carving out even a few hours on Sunday morning for God?  What about those among us who have a hard time giving God 15-30 minutes a day in prayer and devotion?  What about those among us who will spend thousands on entertainment centers in our homes – and on our automobiles – or on our hobbies – or in other ways – yet can’t bring ourselves to tithe our income and give even more to God’s work?

Are we sold out for Jesus or are we simply hoping that He has our back when it comes to Judgment Day?  Jesus said – if you love Me, you will obey what I command – John 14:15.  Do we love Jesus?  And if we say yes – are we following His commands – all of them not just the ones we find easy?  Are we loving Him with all that we have and all that we are?  If the Spirit dwells in us – are we allowing the Spirit to transform us into His likeness?  Or are we trying to have one foot in and one foot out so to speak?  We all know what God says He will do with the lukewarm – right?  Revelation 3:16 – So, because you are lukewarm – neither hot nor cold – I am about to spit you out of my mouth.

I’m just focusing on First UMC for a moment – not the whole Body of Christ.  I wonder what God could do with First Church if our membership – our leaders  our pastor and staff – were all totally sold out for Jesus – totally allowing the Holy Spirit to transform us?  Could we be transformed into a fellowship like the one found in the book of Acts?  A fellowship that was transforming the world?

Just something to think about today as you go on your way.



July 10, 2015 - Posted by | Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, From the Pastor, Holy Spirit, Leadership, Outreach, Personal, Prayer, Sermons, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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