I could be the only one, but for some reason, I seriously doubt I am. It just seems like I am overwhelmed at the incredibly intense, never relenting, marketing-machines in our world today. All to get your attention, first; then, move in to “tell” you why you must buy this product; get on this plan; do this in the new year; or sign-up for this program.
Along with that, there is more “self-help” stuff available than anyone would have resources to purchase and enough time to sift through. It has even infiltrated the church in some levels, as unfortunate as it is. Some is referred to as the “Prosperity Gospel,” and there is no shortage of people (and many who claim to be Christians) who have bought into it completely.
It would seem our goals and objectives, in these types of systems, are magnified over the purposes of God. We can get more. We can have financial security. We can take elaborate vacations. We can retire early. We can reduce stress. We can eliminate anxiety. We can have better kids. We can build our own empire.
But then I hear the resounding words of Jesus – breaking into the very heart of it, asking with clarity: “What does it profit anyone, if they gain the whole world but lose their soul? Or, what would a person exchange for their soul?”
It’s as if He took it to task Himself, settled it, and gave us the answer at the front end. Here it is: Nothing! There is no profit in achieving or acquiring or gaining anything, if it will result in losing your soul in the process. To be sure: It is heart-wrenching that we would even consider it, or that we would miss it in the pursuit of profiting. But the reality is, we do, when we drift, fall away, and resist the Lord and His guide. It’s almost like we sell Him out for what is before us.
How much is enough?
How many goals must we attain?
My experience and history tells me that this is about heart and pursuit more than anything. It’s about what we idolize and what we go after in priority, often, with great urgency. Are we pursuing physical things? Material things? Selfish things that really don’t matter in eternity? Or, do we yield to God and allow Him to guide us in what we should seek? Are we abandoned to Him with everything, or are we holding on to our own preferences and delights?
The Apostle Paul writes in Romans what our response ought to be, right at the beginning of chapter 12. It is a reinforcement of Jesus’ teaching that nothing is worth losing our soul. Paul puts it this way: “I urge you brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to present yourselves as a living sacrifice, holy and well pleasing to God. This is your spiritual act of worship. Do not conform to the patterns of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind…”
Like me, you’ve probably heard, read, and studied that passage a million times. But the question is: Has it sunk in? And if so, how is it manifesting itself? We surely need more of God in our everyday life – and we need to ensure nothing comes before Him.
I’d like to encourage and invite you to join us here at Bridgeway Church. We are in a series that comes alongside of this, and it’s titled: “The Will of God.” You know, He has a will. And His will includes you. So if you are seeking more, wanting more, desiring more in your spiritual life – I believe this is the place for you and yours. Sunday @ 10 am, and we will have a special gift for coming and being our guest.
Blessings for the day…and ponder it over the weekend: What would it profit you to gain everything…everything you can imagine, yet, lose your soul?