There is nothing wrong with curiosity—regardless of what happened to the cat, but there is something wrong with never moving beyond curiosity–with only hearing about Jesus on a Sunday morning or for the people in our text just touching Jesus…Stopping there—would look like this: a laptop without a battery, it may look good, but it is missing something essential. Contrast the Curious Twitter Follower (from yesterday’s post) with those who when called go further—
The Committed Follower (Mark 3:9, 13-15) 9 Because of the crowd he told his disciples to have a small boat ready for him, to keep the people from crowding him… 13 Jesus went up on a mountainside and called to him those he wanted, and they came to him. 14 He appointed twelve[a] that they might be with him and that he might send them out to preach 15 and to have authority to drive out demons.
We might be able to call this the FACEBOOK Follower—FACEBOOK has become famous for being the place where people finally Define the Relationship—in the same way the disciples of Jesus moved from curious to answering who is this Jesus: just a guy, good teacher, or God in the flesh? What contrasts the disciple—one who follows Jesus with those who chase after Jesus is critical:First, they heeded the Call (developing Christ-like character) —They didn’t stop at crowding in, but were ready when called into action and Secondly, they helped work the mission (joining in Christ-like service)-they weren’t chasing some personal prize instead they partnered to achieve the mission—Jesus empowered them to take part preaching, teaching, driving out demons—getting beyond the idea of Jesus and getting to the heart of living out their identity in Christ.
When these two things are present: Christ-like character and Christ-like service, the committed stand out from the crowd. A update on the church I attended during college really stood out to me. It was about Dennis, a long-time member, church treasurer, and elder. Dennis is a pharmacist, in his late 50’s, maybe early 60’s, and he had stepped down from eldership because work was pretty demanding. The eldership board came to him and asked him to consider another term, and he gave the same answer—“Guys! I am really busy, but I will pray about it!” Where requests can sometimes go to die, but he came back a week later, with a startling response: “He said, I prayed about it, and I decided to retire early from my job so I can serve the church!”
Dennis gave up hundreds of thousands of dollars so he could heed the call and recommit to the mission! He recognized that Jesus’ offer is the way of the cross instead of getting crushed by the crowd! Jesus put it so succinctly: For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? It is in surrendering everything that we hand control over to Christ, that we are given everything by Christ! Life in a world of death, hope in a world of despair, community in a world that tries to isolate! Where are you being called to Define Your Relationship with Jesus Christ—to move beyond a casual acquaintance?