Cnr High Street & President Boshoff Street, Bethlehem, Free State, South Africa
Sunday Service and Sunday School at 9:00am
Rev Cecil Rhodes 062 1230 640

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Jesus told his disciples, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.” These words of Jesus describe the essence of Christian faith. It is the following of Jesus that distinguishes the Christian from any other. It is following that defines who we are and how we live. Anyone can believe (take a look at James 2:19), but not everyone follows, and it is the follower, the imitator of Jesus, who is the essence of faith. The power of following is two fold: 1. Following is based on thinking that leads to action. Romans 12 says we should be ‘transformed by a complete change of mind’. Following ‘transforms us by a complete change of mind’, because to follow engages the mind. To follow means I am reading, and thinking, and reflecting on who I am and how I act. There is no other way to know how to follow than to read up on the one you are following. Follow him carefully and he WILL transform you inside out. It is as simple as that. 2. Following is also an act of the heart. A transformed mind is not enough on its own, transformation coming from following Jesus goes much deeper than that. Following is also a matter of the heart. Jesus was totally comfortable with tears, pain, suffering and sorrow. In other words he was human, in touch with his emotions and the emotions of others. So we easily and readily talk about the passion of Jesus. Ours is just not an intellectual faith, but also a passionate faith. If we are not in touch with ourselves and with others, we may not be in touch with God? Is this not why Jesus hung out with folks from the other side of town, because he was in touch with humanity? Following Jesus changes both our minds and our hearts. Following Jesus is both and; not either or. I invite you when you read this to take a moment, pause a while, take a seat, make a cup of tea, and ask yourself: “Am I following Jesus?” “Am I reading up on Jesus, and knowing Jesus as best as I can, so I can follow Jesus as best as I can?” “Is my heart in my faith?”

No comments:

Post a Comment