We can start to love the gifts of God more than the giver of the gifts in God. Jesus points out the great problems facing Laodicea with his strongest rebuke, they need to buy into instead of just buying more, and yet despite pushing Jesus out of their lives, Jesus still–
KNOCKS (Revelation 3:19-21) 19 Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest and repent. 20 Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me. 21 To the one who is victorious, I will give the right to sit with me on my throne, just as I was victorious and sat down with my Father on his throne.This is what continues to floor me about Jesus, he is humbled here in his letter after all their haphazard steps. The God of all creation—Amen—and yet he continues to stand at the door of our hearts knocking! He disciplines and yet still have a demeanor of love. Even though he is eternally God he was willing to humble himself in humanity, humble himself on the cross, humble himself embracing death, so that he could keep knocking, like an alarm clock getting louder, despite our snoozes, despite trying to turn it off, Christ comes knocking! Jesus offers a closeness that we might miss in reading verse 20—eating together is something we might take for granted as we sit in a McDonald’s lobby or sitting in the back of a car as we roll through the drive through, but in the 1st century, inviting someone to your table meant you were inviting them into your life.
Truth sometimes hurt even when we try to mask it. James Fammer tells a story about a woman who acquired wealth and decided to have a book written about her genealogy. The well-known author she engaged for the assignment discovered that one of her grandfathers had been electrocuted in Sing Sing. When he said it would have to be included in the book, she pleaded for a way of saying it that would hide the truth. When the book appeared, it read as follows: “One of her grandfathers occupied the chair of applied electricity in one of America’s best known institutions. He was very much attached to his position and literally died in the harness.” (Howard Clinebell, Intimate Marriage).
Even when we try to hide the truth, it doesn’t change the truth. The truth this morning is that when we lose focus of Christ, we have lost focus with life itself! Christ has come to remind us that being fully human isn’t a manner of having everything we want, but having in him, everything that we need! When you feel like you have nothing left, Jesus promises himself as the victor! Where is God knocking at your door? Not only does Jesus invite the lost into relationship, but he invites those in Christ to come back to himself!
As we finish up Church Shopping—the church you want isn’t across town, or across the country, the church you want is only a series of choices away—when we decide Christ first, that if you have Jesus you have all you need, and that the best things in life come from him! What would you do for the most priceless gift of all—eternal life through Jesus Christ—you have the rest of your life to answer that question.