Is Jesus enough? You may be thinking, "Of course he's enough!" Because, that's something we all want to believe. But, if we take a real look at the craziness of our everyday life, is he really enough? Author, Bible teacher, and ministry leader Lisa Whittle says Jesus doesn't want our wishful thoughts, or our empty words. He wants our hearts. He wants our everything. Let Jesus uncomplicate your life. Put him in his rightful place, where he belongs. Jesus over everything.
Things in our life get complicated often before we know it. Most of us don't willfully choose it; we silently slide into what can be called the Cycle of Complication: we deflect, we overcompensate for a life we can't control (i.e., over-do, over-apologize, over-book, over-think, over-analyze, over-indulge), then we loathe our life and want to get a new one. From Colossians 1:15-23, learn how to give Christ first place. Life is Jesus. Jesus is life.
Being real. It's something so simple, and yet, so very important. There are two choices most crucial to being real: choosing real over pretty and honesty over hiding. Choosing to hide parts of ourselves by not being real is actually the choice to manage and control our lives instead of trusting God to do so. Being real is a gift we give to ourselves and to others. "Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free" (John 8:32).
Sometimes we think drawing people in has something to do with the gifts we give, or the way we keep a pretty home, or the smart things we have to say. But the truth is that people are drawn in when they feel safe. Making someone feel safe is how they feel loved. Love calms fear, draws in the skeptics, brings back the prodigals, and changes hard hearts. Let's continue to uncomplicate our life and put Jesus first by choosing service over the spotlight and love over judgment.
Hype, the never-ending vacuum of worldly knowledge, complicates our lives. The hype, the impulsivity of our culture, constantly wants to push us toward flashy, easy, bigger, and more. And Christians are among the worst at buying into the hype. We try to outdo or one-up each other, or to make a spiritual experience more of an experience than the last thing we did, all in the name of Jesus. Uncomplicate your life by choosing steady over hype, wisdom over knowledge, growth over immaturity.
Poor choices. We've all made them; some, more than others. "God has not called us for impurity, but in holiness" (1 Thessalonians 4:7). Our pursuit of God is a commitment to holiness. When we pursue life God's way, his way works. But, choosing holiness requires us to give up our personal freedom, and requires long-term commitment over our short-term mood swings. If only we'd understand that choosing holiness over freedom is choosing freedom--freedom in Christ. Choose holiness over freedom and commitment over mood.
In the Book of Joshua, we see that arriving in the promised land wasn't enough; they actually had to take possession of the land and claim it as their own. Jesus over everything is the foundation on which to build the rest of our lives. Jesus has the better "land" for us, but before we can take it, we must decide to put him in charge. It's his land to tend, his place to oversee. When Jesus is in first place, we find our truest identity and the most joyful, simple life.