I've been saved for ten and a half years. It feels as though it has been way longer. Sometimes it's even hard to remember what life was like before that day in October 2003, the day that my Savior, my Best Friend, my Love called me out of my messy life of sin and into the co-life (co-death co-burial and co-resurrection) with Him. The person I was then is a vague memory that fades a little more each day. I can't seem to wrap my head around how I ever did life without having relationship with Him.
Many of you reading this have been in ministry longer than I've been saved, and known Jesus for longer than I've even been alive! Your longevity of growing in passion and love for Jesus inspires me. The longer I acclaim His Lordship, surrender to Him, learn more about Him, spend more time with Him, the deeper I dive into His Word, the more I know Him... the more I fall head over heels, passionately, quite obsessively, in love with HIm. He alone is what satisfies, nothing else will do, and the longer I keep living these days the more that fact becomes true and real to me.
But as for me, I trust in You, O Lord; I say, “You are my God.” My times are in Your hand. (Ps 31:14-15)
When I was youth pastoring in Louisiana one of the things that I told my students regularly was "the worst thing anyone could ever say about me is, there goes that girl who used to love Jesus." When I made the decision to live for Christ I knew I was making a decision for LIFE. I felt the seriousness of the words Jesus spoke when He called His disciples "Follow Me". A decision that cost them everything. They left jobs, families, friends, socially acceptable lifestyles, and followed the One who is the One.
"God is looking for those who don't have seasons of consecrations, but lifestyles of it" ~Jaye Thomas
When I read Jaye's quote today I immediately thought of Romans 12 as we're instructed by Paul to present ourselves as living sacrifices. Which of course reminds me of a quote I've repeated many times on this blog, "the problem with living sacrifices is they crawl off the alter."
You don't have to be involved in Christian community long before you find people who once were passionate and zealous for Christ and now don't want to have anything to do with Him. It's not uncommon to find those that proclaim boldly their undying allegiance to Him and it's not too long before they seem to have disappeared back into their old lifestyles.
God is a loving God. He's a merciful God. He is so full of love, joy, grace, compassion, kindness, patience, and I could go on and on and on and on and on about how GOOD HE IS, but this characteristics don't change what God wants for you or even from you. He wants YOU. He wants ALL of you. A life so captivated by Him that it's fully surrendered and consecrated to Him. His Holy Spirit will never give up on you, He'll never stop wooing you back to Him, it's never too late to run back to Daddy God's arms, because He is a good, really good, the best Dad.
I have found the best answer to keep this from happening in my life isn't much different from how you prevent divorce. You just keep falling more in love. Daily grow in love. Choose to daily pursue being in love. When you're in love with Jesus you choose to obey Him (John 14:15)
You communicate, you listen, you pursue time, you pursue intimacy, allow God to speak Truth, allow Him to lead, allow Him to guide, allow Him to be GOD, surrender your "rights", surrender your plans, surrender your thoughts to have His thoughts, surrender your feelings to have His feelings, commit to Him, don't chase other lovers, seek to know His heart... etc.
I believe it is this generation of passionate, laid down, lovers that are going to set a new example of surrendered, lovesick, servants, that change nations. We're seeing it already on a global scale what happens when people fall head over heels in love with Jesus. We saw it with the disciples and we're seeing it again. Thousands and thousands of people who are so in love that they'll go anywhere and do anything often challenging social norms and risking their lives to truly see the "Kingdom on earth as it is in heaven." These Jesus lovers are so in love that just as He says in John, they'll obey anything He says, and as they obey they experience more of Him!! Greater manifestations of His presence, more miracles, more salvations, more healing etc. and as they grow in trust of Him, as they see more of Him, they continue to grow in love and dependence on Him.
We're in this for LIFE. A lifetime of loving and serving the One True King. A lifetime of seeing Him of knowing Him more and more. A lifetime of growing in love. A lifetime of seeing Him work through us to see the Kingdom at work on earth as it is in heaven. I am excited as I hear more and more of what God is doing around the globe through lovesick followers. I'm more and more excited as i talk to people who have been doing this thing a while and they're growing in love and getting ignited to do more. This truly is an awesome season to be apart of the body of Christ.