Feelings are real, but love is so much more. Ribbons and bows aside, telling a brilliant story (like how I fell in love with my husband or my city) may tug at heart strings, but leave you with a romanticized view of live and love. Have you ever heard about the adventure and love of someone else, and then coveted their life? Maybe you even bitterly wondered why your life is so hard? What fairytales don’t tell you is that love and lives full of adventure never come without great cost. But you won’t hear that in a story.
Jesus talked about the cost every chance He could, why do we skip over those parts? Maybe in our culture of comfort and contentment, it’s just too uncomfortable. We think “living for Christ” happen without effort. And when life gets tough, we get mad and bitter. We asked for it to be easy. But that’s not what He promised.
I’ve always been jealous of the disciples. What passion, what love, what adventure! Walking and talking with Jesus. Doing something grand and amazing and meaningful with their lives. Starting the biggest revolution in the history of mankind. But I’ve recently been painfully aware of what it must have cost the disciples to, “Come follow me.” When Jesus called Peter to follow Him, Luke 5 says,
“And when they had brought their boats to land, they left everything and followed Him.”
I always skip that part, but the fact remains: they left everything. And for what? An amazing and adventurous life doing what they were made to do!? Yes. But that was spending 3 years of their life with Jesus with “nowhere to lay their head” (Luke 9:57-62). Following a leader to His horrible murder. Only to be hated, reviled, hunted down, and most of them martyred (as mentioned in Hebrews 11:36-40). I forget the cost they paid.
If you read this blog, you probably know my story. I truly have a romantic love story. Boy meets girl. Boy and girl fall desperately in love. Boy comes and sweeps girl off her feet and carries her away to the land of Texas. When I read it, I still get butterflies. I love sharing my love story with people because it’s full of passion, love, and adventure. It’s a beautiful love story, and an amazing representation of how God reveals His love for us- that we hear His voice, experience His love, see His face, and go to the place He has prepared one day.
As my love story unfolded I was certain of three things:
1. God was calling me to surrender my life to Him.
2. David was the man that God created and called me to love (then and forever).
3. God was calling me to move to Texas.
When I married David, I married the most amazing man in the world and acquired the purpose God had for me in Texas. But it cost a lot. It cost me sharing my life with my family and friends. It cost me the security of my job, my church, and my name in my community. It cost me the life I had known and built for myself. It cost me titles and respect that I had worked hard for. It cost me relationships with people who thought I was crazy. It cost me goals, hopes, dreams of how I had always imagined my future. Following the voice of Jesus cost me everything.
Let me be very clear about something; love always costs everything. Whether its loving Jesus, your spouse, people around you that you’re called to love, or your city; you can never truly love without sacrifice. True love will cost you who you think you are, every bit of pride you have, and ultimately everything you think you have control over.
Love is no easy task.
Culture and society show us such a fake version of love. Friends, don’t be fooled. It has all of us running around getting what we can get from each other. Fake love is always self-serving, using another to feel special and significant. It’s counterfeit, and it’s no wonder many people think love doesn’t exist. Fake love causes only pain. If there’s no sacrifice, no fight, and no cost to the love we are sharing, what kind of love are we representing when we “share the love of Christ?” Not one people are interested in.
True love turns heads. Loving Jesus is going to cost you everything. Living the life of adventure that He calls you to, will not be easy. And truly loving anyone in this life will be the same. But, I have good news, IT IS WORTH IT!
3 final thoughts:
1. Jesus is calling you. He is asking for you to give Him your life, your heart, and your love.
2. Jesus is making you a promise. If you answer His call it will be hard, but it will be a life full of real adventure and love. It will be a life where you are truly satisfied. And one day there will be no more pain and suffering. One day you will be with Him and family and friends for eternity, and He will wipe every tear from your eyes. If today, you will answer His call for your life.
3. Jesus is offering you the purest, most satisfying love imaginable. He counted a great cost for you. Jesus left His comfort, His Father, His power, His control and dominion as God, and became a man. Not so He could fulfill some selfish desire, use you, or live a life of comfort, but so that He could die a terrible death. He did it so that every wrong thing we have ever done, every sense of shame we have ever felt, and every terrible crime ever committed against us could be erased. He didn’t do it because he had to; he did because he loves you. You cost Him more than you could ever repay. You were worth the cost.
Do you realize what it cost for Jesus to love you?
Are you paying any price for love?
“But whatever was to my profit I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. What is more, I consider everything a loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them rubbish, that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ—the righteousness that comes from God and is by faith.”