LIVING FOR ME
“People like Jesus, they just don’t feel like they need Him”
– Steve Canfield
God began a work in my heart at 11 years old, and I gave my life to Jesus. It was genuine. I truly meant it, but somewhere along my teenage years I began to dabble into a life that was light years away from glorifying God. I stopped truly living my life for Jesus and began living my life for myself. I quit track my Sr year after being only 2 inches from the school record in the High Jump (6’4) and previously placing 4th in the state in 5A. I had the opportunity to play basketball after high school. I turned down the opportunity, because I had decided I didn’t want to be tied down. I wanted to live life my way, and that’s exactly what I did for the next several years. Having a couple of run ins with the police department, being put on probation, finding three spots on my liver before I was even 22, a car wreck, and hurting a lot of people who loved and cared about me, none of those things brought me back to the life I was called to live. Instead, it happened in the least expectant way. I was invited to a small group Bible study of about 8 people in a living room. Nothing fancy. Nothing loud. No scare tactics. Just a married couple walking through the book of Romans with us. What grabbed my attention was the guy leading it, John. John was 32 and had a story much like mine. I couldn’t figure out how a guy with a past like he described was the same guy teaching this Bible study alongside his wife. I went simply, because I figured why not. But God began a transformation in my heart that has never ceased. I knew that I wanted to be like John when I was 30. However, I knew there was no way I was going to get there living like I was living. The rest of my story is full of God’s favor and blessing over my life. I want to focus on the mindset I had throughout the process of living for me instead of living for Jesus. When referring to that season of my life this is what I tell people…
I loved Jesus, just not enough to live my life for Him.
I want to live for you one day Jesus, just not right now.
See, just like the quote I liked Jesus, I just didn’t see the need for Him because I was too blinded by my own self. I’m afraid that goes for so many of us who claim to love Jesus. You don’t have to be getting arrested and collecting a crazy testimony like mine to drift away from Jesus. All it takes is allowing your wants to be placed above what God wants for your life. You can be just as lost in your job, your kids, your talents, your hobbies, your social media, your craving of others approval, your anything that has put you living for your eternal purpose on hold. God has a plan for every single human being that will ever walk this earth. He has made every person unique. There is no other you on the earth. He has a purpose for your life. No matter your age or your season of life the point is simple: Are you living for Jesus? I love this question, because there is no smoke and lights with it. There is nothing trendy or cool sounding about the question. It’s not deep theology.
It’s simply a question that ought to pierce through the innermost parts of our souls as long as we have breath in our lungs. It’s a question that ought to govern our every moment. Are you living for Jesus? If you like the concept of Jesus, but you aren’t seeking the lost, making disciples, staying saturated in prayer and God’s Word, and being led daily by the Holy Spirit, then here is the sad truth for you: You like Jesus, but you must not like Him enough to live for Him. Because when you do, that like turns into love and that love turns into a life change.
4 But I have this against you: You have abandoned the love you had at first. 5 Remember then how far you have fallen; repent and do the works you did at first. Otherwise, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place, unless you repent.
Read 1 Peter 4:1-11
2 You won’t spend the rest of your lives chasing your own desires, but you will be anxious to do the will of God.
Place God’s wants for your life above your own. Don’t just like Jesus but live for Jesus.
- Have you abandoned the love you once had for Jesus? (Rev. 2:4)
- Are you chasing your own desires or the desires of God?
- Does your daily life reflect the ongoing transformation of Jesus working in your heart, or are you stagnant?
- What makes it the hardest for you to truly live for Jesus?
- Have you had a ‘I want to live for you God, just not right now’ time in your life?
- What stands out to you in 1 Peter 4:1-11 in relation to the devotional?