I love the idea of Jesus dying for me, but I don’t want to suffer and die on a cross. The pain. The suffering. The shame. I mean he died a public death in front the whole world. He was executed! And, that’s about the last thing on the world I’d want to endure.
So, I have a dream. And, in my dream I die of cardiac arrest, and I go to heaven. God speaks to me and tells me that I can go back to earth on a special mission. I’ll be his man. I’ll be a preacher. Many will turn to him and be saved! I’m ready to say, “Here I am, send me”…then, I hear these words. “If you go back, you will be rejected. Your friends will turn on you. You will be preaching in the Middle East. In the end, they will crucify you and behead you.” And, in my dream, I pause. I’m not sure what to say, and then I wake up.
What was my choice going to be?
The Jesus gospel sounds so great until you’re put in the place of giving your all.
I want you to hear what Jesus said (Matthew 13:44-46):
The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and covered up. Then in his joy he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field.
Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant in search of fine pearls, who, on finding one pearl of great value, went and sold all that he had and bought it.
Imagine you find a tract of land in Baldwin County, Alabama, that has oil reserves to rival those of Saudi Arabia. Billion of barrels beneath those mossy oaks. So, you beg and you borrow. You have nothing left but the Thrift Store clothes on your back, but you scrape up enough to do it. You buy that field. It was the only choice. It cost you everything. It cost you nothing.
And, that’s the way it is with following Jesus. The stakes are high. The reward is great. It will cost you everything, and it will cost you nothing.
So, what’s your choice going to be?