I like to think of myself as spontaneous, even an explorer. And much of the time, I like to think of myself as a giving, loving person. BUT…the TRUTH is I’m only spontaneous SOMETIMES. Most of the time, I stick to routine. SOMETIMES I explore but mainly, I choose familiar routes. And Loving? Giving? Yeah right. I’m more selfish than I like to admit. The TRUTH is I love the comfort and ease of my life. And deep down, I know my love of comfort and self, contradicts what God is all about.
I recently finished Crazy Love by Francis Chan- a book that is in-your-face-intense about love in ACTION. His book is filled with real life examples of the “CRAZY” love people demonstrated in the name of Christ, including adopting orphans, selling off EVERY possession so they could help the homeless or moving to a third world country to start orphanages.
One story that stood out for me was of a person who GAVE their car away to a family in need and started taking the bus. But get this: they decided NOT to buy another car and continue taking the bus and put all the money they saved towards the needy.
This was preposterous to me! At least buy another car! Do you know how long it takes to get from point A to point B on a bus in California? And the thought of being restricted by a bus schedule? UGH…gives me the shivers. And you know what their counter was? They use the time to minister to others on the bus.
(my eyes wide…mouth wide open). I have one word: WOW! Now that’s what we call the Bus-o-LOVE!
Chan’s book CRAZY Love is “CRAZY” because the acts of “love” seem EXTREME to most of us. I wonder…do they seem extreme because…well, we LOVE our life too much?
As much as I’d like to tell you that I’m all Jesus-Freak-Gun-Ho for that kind of life, the truth is, I’m not. Apparently, I’m NOT taking the Bus-O-Love….just yet.
What a heart-check.
Remember the story of the Rich Man? He seemed like a good man. A sensible man. Not greedy at all. He sought after Jesus and followed all of His commandments. One day he asked Jesus what he should do next and Jesus instructed him to sell all of his things and follow Him.
He had a heart-check.
Could he? Yes.
Did he? No.
And he went away sorrowful.
Oh Rich Man, I can relate! I may not be “Rich” by America’s standards but line me up next to the average family in Haiti and I’m a Royal! I love my hot showers, my Starbucks drive thru, the freedom of driving my own car, making my own money and eating what I want, when I want. The life of a royal.
Could I give it all up for another-TO another? Do I LOVE enough? Do I want what God wants more than what I want?
Oh Rich Man….how I know your grief! I see the disparity between what I can be…and what I am. And my “choice”, or lack thereof, haunts me too.
BUT…it’s not time to drown out all hope just yet. We are works in progress. And maybe, we aren’t yet ready for EXTREME acts of love because we haven’t built up an extreme WELL of love. The more intimate time we spend with Him, being LOVED by HIM, the more He fills us up. Spend a small amount of time with Him and we give will be the equivalent of a FIAT. (Beep beep). Not much!
But spend an EXTREME amount of time in His love, and we will overflow with Much-MUCH love: MEGA BUS-SIZED!
Heart-Check: If all we see is a little bit of love, joy and giving coming out of us, we are in great need of His LOVE. The more time we spend with Him— the harder we fall in LOVE. And when we are crazy in love with Him, we will do whatever He asks of us, no matter how extreme it may seem.
Goodbye Starbucks. Goodbye luxury. No big deal in the first place.
HELLO Spontaneity, true adventure (risk and all) and TRUE Destiny.
Let’s ask God to help our selfish hearts. Let’s pray that He excels our capability and willingness to be loved and to love.
Time to stop reading and go hang with the Lover of our Soul.