“It would seem that Our Lord finds our desires not too strong, but too weak. We are half-hearted creatures, fooling about with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered us, like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea. We are far too easily pleased.”
–C.S. Lewis, The Weight of Glory
Here is one of the biggest dilemmas with believing in Jesus and following Him: Jesus wants every bit of who we are. He wants all of us and He won’t settle for anything less than that. The greatest commandment tells us plainly that each of us is to love the Lord our God with all our heart, all our soul, all our mind, and all our strength (see Mark 12:30). There’s no other way to interpret those words than to say that God wants all of who we are and He won’t settle for anything less. We are to love Him with absolutely every fiber of our being.
Does God really have to be this all-or-nothing type of God? The answer, of course, is a resounding “yes.” One of the things that we have to understand is that God dislikes any form of competition. He tells us that we are to have no other gods besides Him (see Exodus 20:3). As recorded in the Bible, whenever God’s people began to worship idols, it would never end well for them. And that’s because God dislikes competition. He is the rightful Ruler of all things and there is to be no competition between God and anything else. God wants all of who we are.
He doesn’t just want 25% of who you are.
He won’t settle for 50% of who you are.
He doesn’t even want just 90% of who you are.
He wants all of you. And He will settle for nothing less. If we’re going to believe in Jesus and follow Him, we might as well go all out. And my prayer is that we’ll begin to move towards following Christ with all of who we are and not just bits and pieces. When it comes to following Jesus, it’s really all or nothing.
P.S. Because we’re sinful human beings, we won’t get it perfectly right. That’s why Jesus died on the cross and resurrected. Through Christ’s sacrifice, we’re forgiven and we become 100% in the eyes of God despite our flaws and imperfections. But the challenge to give 100% of who we are is still there. As a people saved by grace through faith, we are to intentionally love God with all of who we are knowing that if we fail to do so, Jesus has got our backs in the end.