Archives For Luke

Being a disciple of Jesus should cost you something. If it isn’t, chances are you aren’t a disciple. It’s easy to assume you are a disciple of Jesus once you say the magic prayer and invite Him into your life. While such an assumption is safe and comfortable, it isn’t reality. Rather than frightening us, we should all be encouraged to pay whatever price necessary for the privilege of following Jesus.

what is discipleship costing you,A.W. Tozer,Tozer,Matthew 10:21-25,brother will betray brother,Luke 9:57-62,foxes have dens,priorities,dciscipleship,disciple,follower of Jesus,commitment,2 Corinthians 4:17,light afflictions

image © tuk69tuk via Fotolia

A.W. Tozer once prayed the Lord would make him “willing to let my Christian experience and Christian standards cost me something right down to the last gasp.” Tozer understood being a disciple of Jesus would cost him something in this life. What is discipleship costing you?

Click Here to Continue Reading this Post…

Few would admit it, but what most people want is a comfortable relationship with Jesus. We want answered prayers, help through troubled times, and comfort in crisis. Oh, and spending eternity in Heaven while escaping Hell, we want that too. Those are the comfortable benefits making Jesus so desirable to us, after all. Here’s where it gets a little uncomfortable. Jesus didn’t spend a lot of time talking up those benefits. He spent most of His time warning of trials and persecution, and giving stern warnings to those seeking to live a comfortable “religious” life.

comfortable relationship,commitment,discipleship,God's will,mission,pharisees,selfishness,comfort,Hebrews 13:5,never leave you or forsake you,John 14:3,prepare a place for you,John 3:16,God so loved the world,John 16:33,you will have trouble,Matthew 8:20,foxes have holes,Mark 13:10-13,brother will hate brother,2 Corinthians 11:24-27,Matthew 7:22-23,depart from me I never knew you,Matthew 28:20,I am with you always,Luke 9:23,take up your cross

image © digitalskillet1 via Fotolia

His harshest words were reserved for people just like us… those who were trying please God through comfortable and often self-serving platitudes. Comfortable Christianity is synonymous with Pharisaical living.

Click Here to Continue Reading this Post…

We all worship something. It’s how we were created. Whether we realize it or not, we are worshippers. The only question is what, or who, is it we are worshipping? Saying we worship something or someone other than God is an uncomfortable admission. We don’t want to believe we worship unworthy objects.

we are worshippers,worship,worshipping,idols,discipleship,commitment,mission,kingdom of God,God's Kingdom,Matthew 6:24,no man can serve two masters,John 14:6,I am the wy the truth and life,no man comes to the Father except by me,Luke 9:57-62,let the dead bury their dead,foxes have holes,noone who puts his hand to the plow,God's Kingdom,Kingdom of God,purpose

image © kevron2001 via Fotolia

Many people and things will demand our worship, but only God is worthy of it. In fact, he demands we worship only Him. This goes all the way back to the Ten Commandments. Somehow, thousands of years later, we still haven’t been able to honor what He requires.

Click Here to Continue Reading this Post…

For followers of Jesus, daydreaming can be both a blessing and a curse. On the blessing side, what we daydream about offers significant insight into what God created you to do for His Kingdom. If you aren’t certain where your passions lie, pay attention to the things about which you daydream. We tend to dream about those things which captivate and fascinate us. One of the great joys in life is figuring out the intersection between your passions and God’s mission.

daydreaming,passions,God's Kingdom,Kingdom of God,focus,dreaming,dreams,Luke 14:28,no one builds a tower,count the cost,2 Corinthians 10:3-5,take every thought captive

image © Drobot Dean via Fotolia

On the flip side, daydreaming can be an insidious thief of your time and energy. We can waste hours daydreaming and not accomplishing anything for God’s glory. As disciples, we know it is our duty to be good stewards of our time, so we must be careful our daydreaming does not inhibit our Kingdom building.

Click Here to Continue Reading this Post…

I’ve been told I look like Jesus dozens of times in my life. At face value, it’s something every Christ follower wants to hear. In my case, it tends to be because I happen to bear some physical resemble to some of the more famous paintings of Jesus. While hearing someone tell me I look like Jesus never gets old, what I truly long for is someone to tell me I look like Jesus based on how I live, not on how I look.

do you look like Jesus,what did Jesus look like,living like Jesus,looking like Jesus,Jesus physical appearance,discipleship,commitment,Matthew 16:24,take up your cross,Mark 1:35,get alone to pray,went away to pray,Matthew 14:23,withdrew to the mountainside,Luke 6:12,Jesus got up early,Luke 22:41,garden of Gethsemane

image © rghenry via Fotolia

Every time someone tells me this it makes me stop and ponder if the way I am living my life is worthy of such a comment. It’s a question we would all do well to ask ourselves. Physical characteristics aside, do you look like Jesus?

Click Here to Continue Reading this Post…

Most Christ-followers are familiar with the Biblical command to tithe the first ten percent of their income. We can debate the various nuances of the tithe – and we will in an upcoming post – but today I want to discuss giving beyond the tithe. Some struggle with the concept of even giving ten percent back to God, so talking about giving even more may be uncomfortable.

Beyond the tithe,tithing,tithe,ten percent,Acts 2:44-45,shared all that they had,uke 21:1-4,rich young ruler,Mark 10:17-22,widows mite,Matthew 25:31-46,sheep and the goats

image © soupstock via Fotolia

If you are in that camp, please don’t tune out yet. These articles aren’t long, and I believe it will be worth five minutes of your time to take away something to chew on. Giving beyond the tithe isn’t mandated in Scripture, but there are enough examples to make it something we should consider.

Click Here to Continue Reading this Post…

I once read our excess money is given to us to share with others. This is something I’ve tried to incorporate into my own life because I feel there is good Biblical precedence for it. Early Christ followers shared all they had with each other (Acts 4:32-35). This seems to go even beyond simply giving away our excess. In the Old Testament, God gave laws commanding people to not harvest the edges of their fields so the poor could come and get some food for their families (Leviticus 23:22).

giving away our excess,wealth,hoarding,generosity,tithe,tithing,John 10:10,Luke 12:16-21,Proverbs 30:7-9

image © Inna via Fotolia

Jesus told us not to hoard our wealth (Luke 12:16-21). The next question I generally get when discussing this is, “How do I determine how much is excess?” To me, this question is always the result of a scarcity mindset.

Click Here to Continue Reading this Post…

That there is victory in surrender is one of the great mysteries of following Jesus. Almost everything about the life Jesus lived seems upside down and counterintuitive, but perhaps nothing more than this. Who wins by surrendering? History books are not written about those who waved the white flag, but about the conquering heroes and nations. We grow up daydreaming about being the champion, the victor, and the overcomer.

victory in surrender,A.W. Tozer,tozer,discipleship,commitment,surrender,upside down kingdom,Gregory A. Boyd,Gregory Boyd,Greg Boyd,Donald B, Kraybill,Luke 9:62,no one who puts his hand to the plow,Matthew 28:18-20,great commission,go ye therefore into all the world,make disciples of all nations,Luke 9:59-60,let the dead bury the dead,first let me bury my father

image © Antonioguillem via Fotolia

No one dreams of being the one who grows up to surrender. But it is exactly to this Jesus calls us. In fact, He makes it pretty clear unless we are willing to surrender everything, He won’t be able to do much with our lives.

Click Here to Continue Reading this Post…

One of the greatest dangers facing the modern Church is the prevalence of Christians thinking they can play it safe and still have a place in the Kingdom of God. If that seems controversial, let me be perfectly clear and a bit blunt: you cannot play it safe and please God. Those two ideas are diametrically opposed. The life of Jesus was filled with danger and discomfort.

play it safe,playing it safe,commitment,discipleship,mission,God's Kingdom,Kingdom of God,John 16:33,you will have trouble in this world,Matthew 10:16-25,brother will betray brother,Luke 9:57-58,foxes have holes,no place to lay his head,Hebrews 11:32-38,sawed in two,renegade,vince antonucci

image © kantver via Fotolia

He warned his followers their lives would be the same if they chose to stick with Him ((John 16:33; Matthew 10:16-25; Luke 9:57-58). Fast forward a couple thousand years, and the propensity to play it safe has become the order of the day in many – if not most – churches.

Click Here to Continue Reading this Post…

We all have triggers that prompt sinful behaviors. If we learn to recognize the triggers, we will begin to overcome the most problematic sins in our lives. Satan does two things really well. He lies, and he manipulates.  When it comes to his attacks on us, all of them can be traced back to one of those two strategies.

triggers,marshall goldsmith,Matthew 4:1-11,temptation of Christ,Jesus in the wilderness,Matthew 26:36-46,garden of Gethsemane,Luke 22:39-46,sweating blood,temptation,sin,prayer,kingdom of God,God's Kingdom,prayer

image © ArenaCreative via Fotolia

Either he’s trying to get you to believe something untrue, or he’ll try and get you to do something against the will of God. Understanding the simplicity of the enemy’s attacks should help us formulate strategies to resist him. But unless we recognize the triggers in our own lives, we will struggle defeating the schemes of the devil.

Click Here to Continue Reading this Post…