Climb Higher: Don't Give Up
Read Matthew 16:24-28
Then Jesus told his disciples, "If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it. For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what shall a man give in return for his soul? For the Son of Man is going to come with his angels in the glory of his Father, and then he will repay each person according to what he has done. Truly, I say to you, there are some standing here who will not taste death until they see the Son of Man coming in his kingdom."
- Ever been tempted to walk away from Christianity?
- Are you burnt out by all the hypocrisy you've seen?
- Why are there so many phonies in this world--even in the church?
If you've ever felt like giving up and walking away from your faith, could it be that you were gauging Christianity by the actions of others? If so, you'll always be disappointed. The truth is, nobody's perfect--not even the most committed believers in your youth group. Does this mean that those who claim to be Christians are all a bunch of hypocrites? No, just human. Nobody will ever achieve perfection in this life. But with the help of the Holy Spirit, you can be transformed into the image of the world's only perfect Person--Jesus Christ.
Flip open your Bible and read John 5:39-40. The Jewish priests in this passage--men who had committed their lives to studying Scriptures and to seeking God's Son--met Jesus face-to-face, yet rejected Him. Imagine that! They distrusted the Messiah because He didn't fit their human definition of how the perfect role model should look and behave.
Despite the mistakes humans often make, we can always count on, and look up to, the Ultimate Role Model--Jesus Christ. He has never been brought down by sin, and NEVER will be. Are you searching for the perfect role model? All we have to do is look at Christ!
Lord, help me to stay focused on You. I can't do it on my own. Stir the desire in my heart and guide my thoughts, steps, and actions. Amen.