The Good Heart Accepts the Word
What does a heart look like that accepts the Word? How is a life lived that welcomes as its own Jesus Christ the Word of God? The Gospels capture six elements from the very lips of Jesus. Listen to Him. Accept His Word. Desire this depth of devotion, and welcome Him by giving yourself to Him.
Jesus Wants to Have All of Us
In the Gospels we can trace Christ's call to commitment. He states we can't be His disciples unless we desire to evidence these characteristics. Here are six ways that we evidence Christ as our Teacher, and that we are His Followers.
1st - Hearts opened completely in love for Christ - that means we love Him MOST.
In both the good times and the bad, we will continually be confronted with whether we are going to obey Christ and His Word—or buckle under to pressures to compromise our faith and "go with the crowd." Each opportunity to serve God represents this test: Who do we love most? If we do not give Christ the preeminence He deserves, He says that we are not worthy of Him (Col. 1:18; Matt. 10:37).
2nd - Bodies offered completely - that means we die to SELF.
Dying to self is a prerequisite to living for Christ. Paul wrote of this when he said,
"I am crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God" (Gal 2:20).
In spite of the cost of death to self, and whatever personal suffering that may bring, a dedicated disciple will follow after Christ, wherever He chooses to lead.
3rd - Wills surrender unreservedly to Christ - that means we will OBEY.
"Whoever of you does not forsake all that he has cannot be My disciple" (Luke 14:33). Because Christ purchased us with His blood, we belong wholly to Him (1 Cor. 6:19-20). In light of this, He expects us to acknowledge His rightful ownership by not holding back anything for ourselves.
Christ says to us likewise, "Out of love for Me, forsake all you own—and your life will be truly blessed!" We should be so captivated with the Lord that we invest all we have for Him, letting nothing take higher priority than obedience and worship of Christ. A life given unreservedly back to God as a love offering is what stewardship is all about. Stewardship is not only about money, it is about life itself. Time and life are far greater treasures than money and possessions. First and foremost, God wants us—unreservedly!
The essentials of discipleship aren't easy. We must desire to evidence an unrivaled love for Christ, an uncompromising life of self-sacrifice, and an unreserved surrender of all to Christ. The Lord Jesus Christ says that the following characteristics will be manifested in true disciples, and that others will notice that allegiance to Him because of it.
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