Dec. 23rd (Thursday) 2010
My best friend called me last Saturday--which is not unusual at all--to verbally process/rant some newly formed spiritual questions--which is especially not unusual for us. You know in Mark (or is it Luke?), in the garden, when Jesus specifically prays for himself, his disciples, and his the believers? She told me how it made her think, "Why were the disciples and believers separated? Is there a difference between simply believing and following? Does it only take believing to get you to heaven and to have a relationship with Christ, or do you have to follow, too?"
I agreed with her absolutely in her questioningly, but I couldn't really answer her. (She actually thought I might be able to, hah!) Ever since I could comprehend salvation, I've thought that all it required was one prayer proclaiming a belief in God and His ability to forgive and--basically--erase sins. Who cares if it never goes farther than a prayer induced by guilt on the foot of an altar? The Lord is gracious and loving, after all, He would surely accept it and not reject the poor idiot, condemning him to burn eternally in hell. But, but, but then I read in the gospels how if you didn't change the way you thought and lived and EVERYTHING after "becoming a Christian"--for a lack of better words--it didn't count? So like, do some people have to give up everything to follow Jesus and have a personal relationship with him; but then others can just believe, their life not be impacted by their belief at all, and they still get to heaven, too?! I know that's merciless of me, but... That's...not...fair...
But do I REALLY just want to believe? I know that there's so much more out there than ere acknowledgment; don't I want to live it? Do I want to spend my entire life rereading the adventures that are possible once you leave everything to follow Jesus, as accounted by his TRUE disciples? I can pour over them from the safety of a life I'm in control of, but eventually they would grow stale instead of delicious and I would grow to resent these passionate brothers and sisters in Christ.
Don't I, Betsie, want to be passionate instead of just BELIEVE in passion? Don't I want to go, instead of sitting back and observing others with secret jealousy as they go? Do I want to clutch the steering wheel of my life, knuckles white from gripping too hard, TRYING--and fighting--to keep things as normal and road-most-traveled-on without actually swerving into it? Or would it be worth it to let go, allow someone who knows better than I to take control of EVERYTHING and radical up my life?
I'm already losing in the world's eyes because of Him. Maybe it's finally time I accept it, embrace it, and begin winning victories because of Him...
"Righteous people flourish like palm trees
and grow tall like the cedars in Lebanon.
They are planted in the Lord's house.
They blossom in our God's courtyards.
Even when they are old, they still bear fruit.
They are always healthy and fresh.
They make it known that the Lord is decent.
He is my rock.
He is never unfair.