Why I am attracted to Jesus? This is a question that lingers in my mind from time to time. I am still here following Him in my early 50s and on the road journeying, I am looking forward to celebrating my 25th year of religious profession with hope, faith and God’s love and will for me. I am still here in good disposition and deeply desiring of my ongoing journey with Christ, the Master of the Harvest. Being one of the many pilgrims, and as one of His disciples, I am aware that following Jesus is not an easy way. Like many people who are attracted to Jesus, I have never met Him as a real person standing before me but I do know by faith that He is authentic to me. His presence shows how God is here and now. I strongly feel that He is there guiding and accompanying me in this life. I see Him with the eyes of faith and through all the wonders of His works. Hearing His words of wisdom gives me the inspiration to live a life of beauty, and His touch brings healing and comfort, particularly during those tough times when weary, teary and heavily burdened. His unconditional love is freely offered as the breath and source of life that keeps us giving our own lives for others.
To this day, Jesus Christ is calling us to be His disciples. It is a great challenge to follow Him as the centre of our life.
The cost of following Him
Whoever comes to me and does not hate father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, yes, and even life itself, cannot be my disciple. (Luke 14:26)
One important thing in following Christ is to always put Him at the centre of everything. This is a radical life because we leave everything and give Jesus the priority above all things, including our family. To focus our being entirely on Jesus is the reason of our existence. In trusting in God and having our life in Him, we know that He will take care of us, our family members and our friends as we serve others. In being not so much attached to people, we lift them up to God.
The cross is part of following Christ
Whoever does not carry the cross and follow me cannot be my disciple. (Luke 14:27)
Jesus clearly mentioned that in following Him the cross is part of the package that we cannot escape, eliminate or deny. We are called to embrace and accept the cross. Whether it be big or small, it is freely given to us and is part of becoming Christ’s disciple and the struggle and joy in bearing it helps us to gain wisdom in life. We are stronger and better disciples because of it and Him.
Giving up the possession of whatever we have treasured
None of you can become my disciple if you do not give up all your possessions. (Luke 14:33)
Sometimes having a lot of possessions, because we work so hard, becomes the source of our pride and attachment to those things which have sentimental value for us. Sometimes non-material things like our talents, bright ideas, creativity and intelligence can also be the source of pride, being self-sufficient, and self-righteous as we may feel that we are greater than others. These possessions may hinder us in following Christ as they divide our attention and focus between Christ and these things in our lives.
Totally following Christ keeps us humble and simple in many ways so that the journey of life is light. We learn to share with others who are in need and we renounce whatever is not truly necessary for us. We learn not to be attached to many worldly things. It is not easy to follow Christ because the journey of following Him is a contradiction of what the world offers to us.
To be with Christ is a journey full of faith, hope and love. Being on that journey with Christ, our faith in Him is strongly grounded and the foundation of our belief is solidly in Christ. In those times of difficulty and life challenges we will be able to stand still and firmly as we are rooted in Christ on the road of holiness – that narrow pathway on which we follow Him.