If Jesus told me to go to a foreign nation today to proclaim the Gospel for the rest of my life, I don’t think I could. As someone that longs to be a better follower of Christ every day, that’s a difficult conclusion for me.
But could you? If you heard an audible voice from Christ telling you to pack up and leave everything you know behind immediately, could you do it?
It’s nice to think we could and would.
Check out the disciples though. Simon was just minding his own business, hanging out with his brother Andrew, catching some fish, putting in a hard days work. Then this stranger guy named Jesus comes up and says, “Follow Me. And I will make you fish for men. Oh and Simon, I’m changing your name to Peter.”
And they got up, left their nets, and immediately followed this stranger!
Now, I don’t think Jesus ever would call us to abandon our obligations. He would never say, “I know you have 2 young kids and a spouse, but you need to leave them here and go minister to orphans in Haiti for the rest of your life.” Christ would never say, “I know you have car payments, and a mortgage, and that you still owe money for your college education, but forget about those debts and follow me.”
What if Simon Peter had financed his fishing boat and nets? What if he had 2 used donkey payments? Would he have felt conflicted about leaving everything he knows and owes immediately to follow Jesus? Would Jesus have even called Peter to follow him for this journey in the first place?
“No one can be a slave to 2 masters since he will either hate one and love the other, or be devoted to one and love the other. You cannot be slaves of God and money.” – Matthew 6:24
I proclaim to follow Christ. I have a relationship with Him. He’s not a stranger to me. The thought of not being able to follow Him when He calls me for something awesome has kept me up at night.
When we put ourselves in bad financial positions; owing others money, not having any equity in a home, financing cars and student loans, and buying things on credit cards, it makes it difficult to follow Jesus immediately when He calls.
Worse, what opportunities is He not calling us to because we have other obligations?