A Love That Is Not Convenient
…looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
Most Christians do not have an issue professing that they love Jesus. However, the same group of Christians may shy away when they are required to serve those around them. Loving Jesus is easy if it is just about that nice, warm fuzzy feeling inside of us. However, it is not. Personally, I am also guilty of that. I have noticed that when the call to serve arises, there are often times where I murmured under my breath, “That’s so inconvenient.” Sounds familiar?
As I grow as a Christian and look back at my life, I realise how blinded I have been. Our fallen nature wants a love that is self-centered; a love that is self-serving and a love that is convenient. But, a love that is convenient may not be love after all. The world makes love look natural, intuitive and easy. We see that in movies and hear about it in the latest Billboard hits. The Bible tells us that God is love and if we take a good hard look at how God exemplifies love, we will know that true love is never convenient and never takes the easy way out.
Making His way from Heaven to earth into a manger is not convenient; relinquishing His deity to dwell among sinners is not convenient; choosing to die on a wooden cross for sinners is not convenient either. Love is never a language of convenience. It is a language of commitment. Love is never about only what we can or want to offer, it is always about what is needed. A needy mother does not look into her empty purse and decides that her baby will go hungry today. She looks at her crying baby and seeks what she does not have to meet that need. Jesus knew that there was no other way for man to be reconciled to His Father except through His death. He could have offered a whole legion of angels to die in His place but He knew that would not do the job. He knew what was needed to redeem lost sinners like us, and He gave to meet that need.
This is clearly laid out in Hebrews 12:2. Jesus knew the joy that will be before Him when the power of death and sin was broken; when sinners could now be friends of God and when those who believed could enjoy eternal life with Him. With that in mind, He gladly endured the cross and despised the shame. None of these are convenient. Love feels the need and goes the distance to meet it. A convenient love is oxymoronic.
If Jesus did not take the inconvenience to die for me, where would I be? My soul would be hanging by the edge of hellfire, let alone having an opportunity to serve God! What inconvenience am I talking about when God came as flesh to die for me? Friends, there cannot be a sacrifice too big nor an inconvenience too much to bear when Jesus has taken the biggest inconvenience and given us the greatest sacrifice. A Christian talking about inconvenience is a Christian who has lost sight of the Greatest Sacrifice made for him. A Christian who loves Jesus will bear the inconvenience willingly to meet the needs of those around him by serving them.
Do you love Jesus? If you do, then serving His Kingdom purpose through evangelism and discipleship must not be inconvenient to you. If it is, pray for a change of heart, pray for a revival. Are there needs around you that can be met? Are there people around you who need to know Jesus? Are there people who need to be fed, clothed and healed? Will you be willing to lay down your resources and inconvenience yourself to meet those needs?
Let us pray.
“Dear Jesus, thank You for loving me so much that You willingly took the inconvenience to lay down Your life for me. You knew my need for You and gave it all to meet my need for a Savior. Forgive me for those times when inconvenience was my excuse to not serve Your kingdom purpose. Let my love for You be a love of commitment and not a love of convenience. Change my heart and help me to meet the needs of those around me like how You meet mine. Help me to feel the needs of those around me the way You do and strengthen me to go the distance to see them met through Your glorious riches. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.”