Tuesday, 30 April 2013

Let's be having you!

The title of the post echoes the infamous Delia Smith incident at Carrow Road a few years back. She wanted the Norwich fans to get behind their team and try to help motivate them to avoid relegation from the Premier League. I am hijacking it for a much more serious purpose and my motivation is not to guilt-trip anyone, but to stir our hearts, and maybe shake us up, as we think about living for Jesus.

I read the following quote from Howard Guiness in Marcus Honeysett's book "Fruitful Leaders" recently and was massively challenged by it.

Where are the young men and women of this generation who will hold their lives cheap and be faithful even unto death? Where are those who will lose their lives for Christ’s sake – flinging them away for love of Him? Where are those who will live dangerously, and be reckless in His service? Where are his lovers – those who will love Him and the souls of men more than their own reputations or comfort or very life?

Where are the men who say “no” to self, who take up Christ’s Cross to bear it after Him; who are willing to be nailed to it in college or office, home or mission field; who are willing, if need be, to bleed, to suffer and die on it?

Where are the men of vision today? Where are the men of enduring vision? Where are the men who have seen the King in His beauty, by whom from henceforth all else is counted but refuse that they may win Christ? Where are the adventurers, the explorers, the buccaneers for God who count one human soul of far greater value than the rise or fall of an Empire? Where are the men who glory in God-sent loneliness, difficulties, persecutions, misunderstandings, discipline, sacrifice, death?

Where are the men who are willing to pay the price of vision?

Where are the men of prayer? Where are the men who, like the Psalmist of old, count God’s Word of more importance to them than their daily food? Where are the men who, like Moses of old, commune with God face to face as a man speaks with his friend and unmistakably bear with them the fragrance of the meeting through the day?

Oh that we would hold Jesus as our treasure, have Him capture our hearts so fully that we can say with the Apostle Paul that "to live is Christ and to die is gain" or with the Psalmist declare that the love of God is "better than life". Then, and only then, will any of us be the men and women of vision who will be ready and willing to give everything for the sake of the gospel, ready to take up our cross and follow Jesus.

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