There comes a point in time when we must decide what we believe. A time when we must know without a doubt what we believe.
I had a moment like that tonight. My roommate and I lead a Bible study on campus, and we’re beginning to get plans rolled out to go co-ed. Previously it’s been solely a guy’s Bible study, but we have recognized the need for the girls that we’re friends with who don’t have a Bible study to go to.
As we were discussing topics with the other guys in the group, what we wanted to study and talk about this semester, a lot of great things came up. Spiritual gifts, reading certain books of the Bible as a group, diving into James, Hebrews, a couple of the Gospels.
We ended the meeting in prayer, and that’s when it hit me.
We had once again missed the mark. We’d hit all the peripheral things, things that are good and useful…but missed the main topic. The main topic had been left, stranded by the roadside at the beginning of the meeting where we kicked Him off the bus.
I do not believe in spiritual gifts.
I do not believe in studying the books in the Bible.
I do not believe in constant prayer.
I do not believe in two hour meetings once a week.
I do not believe in singing songs.
I do not believe in a lot of things…because none of those things gave me life. They are all good things indeed, but only one thing gave me life.
I believe in Jesus.
I believe that I need nothing more than Him.
Without Him, I am nothing.
Without Him, I have no strength.
Without Him, I am weak and frail and prone to failure.
With Him though, I am strong.
With Him, I have conquered mountains that I have never dared to climb.
With Him, I have broken barriers that stood in my way.
With Jesus, I have learned one thing. One thing that has brought me further than any other. Further than I could have walked myself. Further than the West Fort Ann United Methodist Church. Further than Cornerstone Bible Church Youth Group. Further than Christian Fellowship Center. Further than InterVarsity Christian Fellowship. Further than numerous Bible studies. Further than numerous prayer meetings. Further than countless “church” services. Further than countless Lifegroup meetings. Further than numerous meetings with mentors. Further than accoutability partners. Further than family, physical and spiritual. Further than friends. Further than human love. Further than ANYTHING I’ve ever known, encountered, or read about.
With Jesus. I have learned to focus on Him.
To constantly focus on Jesus has done more for me in less than a year, than probably 6 years of being a Christian.
By constantly focusing on Jesus, my heart ever dwells on Him, leaving all else behind. I have met some of my truest friends while completely focused on Jesus. I have gone through some incredible transformations while focused on Jesus.
By ignoring the constant forces and winds of modern Christianity, I have found a complete and utter peace in the face of Jesus.
Waves constantly bombard us, “Give to the church,” “Give to this program because they’re against abortion,” “Give to this program because they provide water,” “Give to this program because they’re against homosexuality.”
Those are all things that should be left alone for now. I will not say any of them are bad. I’m a human being, I have compassion for the rape victims, the thirsty, and the homosexuals. I have emotions.
But in the face of Jesus…all those things fall and lie on the ground.
If people were to truly focus on Jesus, there would be a revolutionary change in the world. A change so revolutionary, that people would notice. They would wonder.
I mean how many people actually walk by a building on Sunday morning, see the word “Something something Church,” and wonder. People just walk by it.
We’re so focused and consumed with vanity that we want to help people around the world. We want to be able to point and say “There. See what we did? We did that.”
And we ignore the people next door. We ignore the perfectly normal family. Some people say “Oh, I’ve invited them before. Now it’s up to them to come.”
Why not be radical. Why not go to them. Why not become friends with them. Why not associate with the people outside of your “church?” Are they bad people because they don’t go to a meeting one day a week? Are we better because we do? Are we better because we go to multiple meetings sometimes?
We plan, come up with strategies, and think about ways to bribe people to come to a meeting. One person comes and “Hallelujah! God did a marvelous work!”
What about the others? the ones the didn’t come?
I believe in Jesus. I focus on Him so completely that I love associating with people who don’t go to “church.” You know why?
It’s those little moments. Someone that I hang out with slowly stops cussing after a while. Someone else might talk to me about a sensitive issue, and I can give them real advice. Someone just needs a hug, and I can be there to give it.
Changing the world will never happen at mega-churches, stadiums, and Sunday morning meetings. Sure you’ll get some people. But the real stuff, the real changes, they happen in the real world.
They happen when you’re so focused on loving Jesus and fixing your heart, mind, and gaze on Him. That’s when people notice. That’s when they begin to see true belief, and they won’t even know it at first.
All they’ll know is you’re normal. And people like normal. But that little Jesus thing, that’s enough to permeate the whole relationship. After all you only need a little yeast to leaven the dough. So if you want a direction, a self help tip, a piece of advice.
Go. Love Jesus. And focus solely on Him. Let ALL other things fall to the way side.