As we continue our study of chapter 8, let’s dive into four more profiles of the obsessed. What does it look like when someone is obsessed with Jesus Christ?
Servers –In Matthew 13:44, Jesus tells about the Parable of the Hidden Treasure: “The Kingdom of Heaven is like a treasure that a man discovered hidden in a field. In his excitement he hid it again and sold everything he owned to get enough money to buy the field.” Chan suggests that many American churchgoers may be limiting their love for God because they are so hesitant to do anything for Him. The man in this parable discovered the Kingdom of Heaven by accident but realized its worth immediately – he sold everything he owned so he could buy the whole field. He gave up everything he had for the Kingdom of Heaven. Yet, God offers it to us as a free gift, ready for whoever is willing to accept it.
People who are obsessed with Jesus do not consider service a burden. Obsessed people take joy in loving God by loving His people.
Givers – When I flipped the pages of my Bible to James 2:14-26, our theme verse for this section, some words that I had written there recently leaped off the page at me: “Faith in Christ spurs us to ACT”. When we accept Christ as our Lord and Savior, He begins to change our hearts to become more like His. It is a gradual, but continual, process of sanctification that only He can do. He commands us to “love your neighbor as yourself” (Matthew 22:39). If you stop and really think about that statement, it is very profound. We are all very me-centered, selfish humans. Just because we wear the label “Christian” does not mean that we are immune. We must bring our selfishness to the cross every single day. But…If we love others as much as we love ourselves, can you imagine what the world would look like? What if we stopped making excuses and started ACTing?
People who are obsessed with God are known as givers, not takers. Obsessed people genuinely think that others matter as much as they do, and they are particularly aware of those who are poor around the world.
Sojourners – Grandma Clara sounds like quite a woman. Have you ever known anyone in your lifetime that was so Heaven-focused? This earthly life is but a blip on the screen, but to us, with our struggles and challenges, joys and sorrows, sometimes we get overly focused on the here and now. We forget to look past the current situation to envision eternity with Christ, where no sickness or struggle will be found; where we will all live in glorious harmony praising our King. Oh what a day that will be!
A person who is obsessed thinks about heaven frequently. Obsessed people orient their lives around eternity; they are not fixed only on what is here in front of them.
The Engrossed – The first commandment says that we must “Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength” (Deut. 6:5). This command encompasses every aspect of us as human beings. Heart, soul, and strength make up who we are as individuals. The Lord says we should love Him with everything that we have and all that we are. We should not limit our love in any way. So, what does that mean exactly?
It means not holding back from God. He already knows everything anyway, so do not be afraid to talk to Him and be honest with Him. He knows you and loves you deeply. He WILL help you through anything you are facing. And the more you lean on Him, the more deeply you will fall in love with Him.
A person who is obsessed is characterized by committed, settled, passionate love for God, above and before every other thing and every other being.
Lord, thank You for showing to us what profiles of an obsessed follower of Christ looks like. Although we are human and fall short every day, we know that Your grace keeps pushing us forward and helps us to achieve new heights day after day. Thank You for Your unending and overflowing grace, Father. Convict our hearts and show us how we can fall more deeply in love with You. It’s in Your Son’s matchless Name that we pray, AMEN!
Which of these four profiles convicted your heart? Why? What step of faith can you take to act on this conviction?
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